A 40-year-old estate agent, Laitan Oladeji, has been arrested by policemen attached to Ojodu Berger division for allegedly swindling about 200 prospective tenants of about N60 Million in Lagos. The suspect reportedly collected the sum from the prospective tenants as rent for two buildings located at Bashiru and Jide Taiwo streets in Ojodu Berger area of the state.
Trouble, however, started for the prospective tenants following delay from Oladeji and the developer (still at large) with an unknown identity, to give them keys to their respective apartments.
it was learnt that some of the apprehensive victims cleverly moved their belongings into any of the vacant flats when it became apparent that the estate agent was not forth coming with a favorable response. This, caused an uproar as others who claimed they were also given keys to the flats ordered the ‘intruders’ to vacate their apartments.
A resident in the area told Crime Alert that , “Trouble started about two months ago, when some people who had paid money to the agent came around to check if the apartments they paid for were ready for them to move in, only to realize that other occupants were already occupying them.
Further investigation by these prospective tenants revealed the occupants were legitimate tenants as well, as they equally paid and have their receipts as evidence.
The very next day, this street was filled with over 200 people, mostly women, who came with receipts claiming they paid money for the apartments. Some of them came with lawyers, some even came with police men. At this point we discovered the developer was no where to be found and his phone number was not going through.”
When Crime Alert visited one of the buildings located on 13 Bashiru street Ojodu Berger, it was discovered that all apartments in the two storey building, ranging from ‘two bedroom, mini and self contained flats were all occupied. The second building, a storey building located on Jide Taiwo street, which equally comprises flats of various categories were also reportedly occupied by the prospective tenants who allegedly forced the lock on the door open , to occupy them.
But for those who were not lucky to lay their hands on either of the paid flats, it was a tale of woe as some lamented that they borrowed the money.
Some o f them claimed to have paid sums ranging from N750,000 to N1Million as two years rent including agency fee, for two and three bedroom flats respectively.
The residents said those who could not get any of the apartments, threatened to burn it down. But that was never to be as policemen from Ojodu – Berger division reportedly arrived the area when contacted and invited all aggrieved persons to the station, at the end of which the agent, Oladeji was arrested.
The number of people that showed up at the station totaled 253. Sources at the station told Crime Alert that the suspect would be charged to court, adding that effort was still on to arrest the fleeing developer.