Property marketing consultant ‘who falsely claimed his sister and nephew had been Grenfell victims to get £32,000 payout stated he noticed folks crying in burning tower regardless that he was 12 miles away on the time’
- Father-of-five Abolaji Onafuye made £32,000 in donations and housing help
- Courtroom instructed he stated he had ‘misplaced his household and had nowhere to go’ after the blaze
- He’s on trial for 2 counts of fraud by false illustration, which he denies
Richard Spillett, Crime Correspondent For Mailonline
A person accused of fraud over the Grenfell Tower blaze was truly 12 miles away on the day of the fireplace, a court docket has heard
A property marketing consultant who falsely claimed £32,000 as a Grenfell Tower sufferer was the truth is 12 miles away on the time of the fireplace, a court docket heard.
Nigerian father-of-five Abolaji Onafuye claimed he was dwelling in flat 84 and that sufferer Zainab Deen, 32, and her two-year-old son Jeremiah – who each died within the blaze – had been his sister and nephew.
Onafuye, 54, is claimed to have dishonestly pocketed £32,000 in donations and housing help after the inferno in west London on June 14 final yr.
Prosecutors stated he instructed authorities he had been by way of ‘horrible struggling’ had ‘misplaced his household and had nowhere to go’.
He claimed he was entitled to compensation due to the psychological trauma he suffered after watching the occasion within the space.
However cell web site proof confirmed his telephone was used a minimum of 12 miles away from the tower that day, a court docket heard.
Jurors heard native taxpayers in Kensington and Chelsea footed the £23,500 invoice for Onafuye’s keep on the Grosvenor Resort – and one other £13,000 in dwelling prices after he was rehoused.
Onafuye stated in his police interview: ‘I used to be briefly insane as a result of I used to be fasting after I was arrested.
‘After I was saying I lived in Grenfell Tower in my police interview I used to be not in the precise mind set. It was a hallucination.’
He claimed Zainab Deen and her son Jeremiah, who died within the hearth, had been his sister and nephew
The court docket heard Onafuye attended the Westway help centre and spoke to a volunteer there, Riaz Somir, on June 21 final yr.
He instructed Mr Somir that he was staying in Flat 84 of Grenfell Tower however was not there on the night time of the fireplace.
However suspicion was later aroused and Onafuye was questioned.
After his arrest, he was adamant to police that he was a resident of 84 Grenfell Tower.
He wept in interview when he described the format of the now destroyed flat and claimed a ‘Mr Martin’ was his flatmate.
However he later claimed he had been fasting on the time and wasn’t in the precise thoughts.
He claimed: ‘After I was saying I lived in Grenfell Tower in my police interview I used to be not in the precise mind set. It was a hallucination.’
The fireplace within the west London tower block claimed the lives of 82 folks
In court docket, Onafuye stated: ‘I suffered psychological trauma. I suffered. Why do you suppose that I hadn’t completed my college course. I suffered a depressive collapse.’
Requested whether or not he had seen a physician about this, Onafuye replied ‘no.’
The court docket additionally heard how Onafuye had registered his NatWest checking account to the deal with.
However he blamed a mistake by the financial institution as a result of ‘there was no motive, nor rationale to do that.’
Onafuye, of Hammersmith, denies two counts of fraud by false illustration between 21 June final yr and seven June this yr. The trial continues.
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