A police inspector, Oluwadare Nelson Badejo aka Dare, attached to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Ikeja, Lagos State Police Command, has fled to Canada after allegedly defrauding several police personnel and civilians of over N48 million for visas.
Some angry policemen said Dare used to travel frequently to London and even told them that he was born in Britain, thus he was a British citizen.
It was based on these claims that many of them fell for his scam. When he told them that he could facilitate their travel documents and get visas to any country, they believed him.
Dare allegedly collected money ranging from N1.2 million, N1.4 million and N1.8 million from his police and civilian victims. But before he takes on the job of supposedly preparing visa for a client, he would first ask for initial deposit of between N300,000 and N400,000 for a form. Once the person pays the money, he gives the person the form to fill out his details, before he would then start asking for money to get the visa and other travel documents.
The fleeing Dare did not only defraud policemen working with SARS and those at the Command Headquarters, Ikeja, he also stretched his game to the GRA, Ikeja office of the Inspector-General of Police Special Intelligence Response Team (IRT).
Indeed, IRT operatives, known for cracking tough high profile cases and had arrested several fraudsters, never believed that their own colleague could pull a fast one on them. Thus some of them fell for Dare’s gimmick. The most brazen of his moves no doubt was the defrauding of one of his bosses, an administration officer, working at the police headquarters.
While policemen and civilians are helplessly seething in anger, our reporter heard that some people have gone to the Force Criminal Investigations Department (FCID), Alagbon, Ikoyi, to complain in the hope that Interpol Unit could be dragged into launching an investigation with the Metropolitan Police Service.
For some unfathomable reasons, the Lagos State Police Command hierarchy had continued to maintain a studied silence on the matter, in spite of repeated prodding and questions from our reporter.
A policeman, whose friend’s was a victim, said: “This is one of the best executed scam I have ever seen. Everyone is still in shock. Dare is a guy that everyone loved and trusted. It is difficult to believe that he could hurt his fellow policemen and women. He collected money from policemen, women and civilians. He also collected from my poor friend. He promised to get Canadian working visas for most of them. Do you know that he collected N1.2 million from each of these people? He told them that their visas would be out in three months’ time and then after three months, he would start dribbling them.”
To ensure that they buy his yarns, Dare would show pictures of visas saved on his phone gallery, which he claimed to have prepared for people, now outside the country. And while giving out forms for victims to fill, he would give them ink to thumbprints, making everything to look official.
“He even took some policemen to Canadian Embassy just to convince them that the deal was genuine. However, when they got to the embassy, he told those he went with to wait outside, while he went into the embassy. A few minutes later, he came out, claiming that ‘his personal person,’ who used to assist him with the visas, was not on ground, that the present person on duty would cause problem for them.”
Just when his victims were beginning to get tired of his stories and started expressing their suspicion, Dare applied for Sport Leave as a policeman and it was approved. He bolted to Canada to join his wife and three children.
According to his colleagues, Dare has a second wife in Holland, who he told his victims, was his agent. Once in a while, he would ensure that his Holland wife had video calls with clients to convince them that she was on ground concerning travelling issues. She usually asks questions which have to do with documentations.
Another policeman said: “Once he collects money from you, he tells you that he has an agent, but all money goes into his personal account. Do you know that he abandoned his police work and ran to Canada? He told everyone that one of his partners in the visa business is the sister of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo’s wife. I heard some people tracked the woman down to her office after Dare ran away, but I didn’t go with them. She has office at Maryland. She told those that went there that she had no business with them and didn’t know them. She said that the person she had business with was Dare. Sometimes he would promise to add his victims to the Oni of Ife’s entourage, whenever the Oba’s would be travelling. He would then give you forms to fill so as to be part of those that would be on the Oni’s entourage.”
While frantically trying to locate him, his colleagues discovered that he has three buildings – two at Ayobo and one at Atan, Sango-Ota. He was alleged to have built one of the houses within four months.
After Dare bolted, he stopped picking calls, but not before he had gleefully told his colleagues, that he was never returning to Nigeria. According to his colleagues, Dare has just six years left in the Force to retire. He has worked with the Force for 29 years.
Our reporter also heard that the Lagos State Police Command Provost had been looking for him until it was learnt that Dare had fled the nest.
On February 2, our reporter contacted the state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Bala Elkana, on the matter, he responded that he needed to make inquiries and revert to the reporter, but he didn’t get back.
On February 4, our reporter sent him a text message on the matter, but he also didn’t respond.
On February 5, our reporter once again sent the image maker a text message and called his phone line; he didn’t reply the text and didn’t pick his calls.