By Yusuf Alli,
Detectives are holding businessman who allegedly collected N7billion from 20,700 potential investors.
Babagana Abba Dalori, 35, a 2010 graduate of Electrical/Electronics, University of Maiduguri, is the Managing Director, Galaxy Transportation and Construction Services Limited. He is being held by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Dalori allegedly lured unsuspecting investors with mouth- watering Returns on Investment (RoI).
He also promised his investors as high as 135% and, in some cases, 200 % on their investment.
According to the suspect, he started his business in 2012 with just a tricycle (Keke NAPEP) and by 2014, hundreds of people had shown interest in it and he felt the need to diversify.
A document on the investigation said: “The suspect further claimed during interrogation by the EFCC operatives that he diversified into sand mining, Haulage business (tipper), transportation (commercial buses) while hundreds of investors were still falling on themselves to part with their hard earned money as the stake on Return on Investment had been raised from 135 percent to 200 percent.
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“In 2016, Dalori veered into full transportation business as he registered Galaxy Transport and Construction Company with his mother as co- director.
“In 2017, he claimed that he invested about N400 million to acquire a quarry licence and started mining at Mpape, Abuja. He added that he had offices in 11 states and continued to lure his investors with mouthwatering returns.”
The EFCC explained that about 20,700 potential investors had fallen victim of the suspect’s business antics.
The document added: “He continued collecting money from investors until his investors rose to 20, 700.
“But instead of concentrating on the line of business for which the investors had put their money, he further diversified as he registered and delved into Galaxy Global Energy Limited, Galaxy Miners Concepts Limited, Galaxy Global Farms, Galaxy Guest Palace Limited, Galaxy Hospital, Galaxy Computing, Galaxy Block making and Galaxy Car Wash.
“Investigation further revealed that in all the above companies registered, which spread across three cities of Abuja, Maiduguri and Yobe, the investors were never carried along, neither were they co-owners of the companies.
“Several investors interviewed explained that they invested between N2million to N20million in Galasy Company but were never carried along in the multimillion investments he diversified into.
“Prior to his arrest by the EFCC, most of the investors had been agitated as the suspect remained incommunicado.”
“Several visits to his office in Abuja did not yield positive results as the suspect was said to have switched off his phones while Galaxy offices were now deserted by his officials. The suspect is being quizzed by the EFCC operatives while investigation is ongoing.”
When the operatives confronted Dalori over the alleged fraudulent activities under his Galaxy scheme, the suspect said: “I have a mindset to be an entrepreneur and assist people and provide jobs since there are no white-collar jobs again. I started as a transporter with a tricycle at a Yarkasuwa Market Gwarimpa, Abuja and the Keke NAPEP later expanded to 50 tricycles.
“I bought a house in Gwarimpa and later sold the house for N8.2 million in 2014. I used this money to diversify to other businesses.
“Between 2012 and 2014, the business boomed while my friends, relations and classmates picked interest in the businesses.
“But natural disaster and flood affected the businesses in 2018, thereby creating problems for me and the consequent inability to meet up with the investors”.
When asked if he knew that what he was doing was fraudulent, Dalori replied in the negative, saying that “all I was doing was to assist fellow Nigerians and I have no intention defraud anyone. The businesses were okay and I was paying good returns to the investors before the natural disaster and floods caused my problems and affected the investments.”