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Bail granted Student (19) accused of withdrawing money linked to €92,000 ‘smishing’ scam

There was CCTV footage of withdrawals being made by the accused, it was alleged.

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 The offences were alleged to have taken place at AIB branches over a four-week period in December 2020

The offences were alleged to have taken place at AIB branches over a four-week period in December 2020

The offences were alleged to have taken place at AIB branches over a four-week period in December 2020

A STUDENT is alleged to have withdrawn money that had been illegally transferred from compromised bank accounts in connection with a €92,000 “smishing” scam.

Akeem Olajuwom Ahmed (19) is facing multiple charges of handling stolen property.

Judge Bryan Smyth granted him bail subject to conditions and adjourned the case at Dublin District Court.

Mr Ahmed, with an address at Elsmore Close, Naas, Co Kildare, was remanded in custody with consent to bail.

Detective Sergeant Stephen Kelly said the accused made no reply to any of the charges when they were put to him at Clondalkin Garda Station last night.

Objecting to bail, he said the charges were serious and the offences were alleged to have taken place at AIB branches over a four-week period in December 2020 and January this year.

People had received text messages purporting to be from AIB bank, their accounts were compromised and funds transferred into "mule accounts" and withdrawn, the court heard.

Withdrawals were made from the "mule accounts" at locations including the Naas Road and Dun Laoghaire.

There was CCTV footage of withdrawals being made by the accused, it was alleged.

Sgt Kelly said the alleged withdrawals totalled €22,000 while the total transferred out of customers accounts in smishing fraud was €92,988, he said.

A mobile phone seized from the accused had activity including “exchanges of bank account numbers with other individuals,” Sgt Kelly said.

It was accepted that Mr Ahmed was an Irish national with strong ties to the state.

Applying for bail, the accused’s solicitor said Mr Ahmed did not accept or deny that it was him in the CCTV and the footage was not in court.

The accused was attending college, had family in Ireland and had no prior convictions, his solicitor said.

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There was nothing to indicate he would not turn up in court if granted bail, and bail could be revoked if there was any breach, he said.

Judge Smyth said they were serious charges but Mr Ahmed was presumed innocent and he granted him bail, in the accused’s own bond of €1,000, with no cash lodgement.

The judge also required an independent surety of €8,000, half of which is to be in cash.

Under conditions, the accused must live at an address provided, sign on at Athy Garda Station, observe a curfew and have no contact with four named people.

He was remanded to Cloverhill District Court, on October 1.

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