Nigeria - 419 Coalition 2017 News on Nigerian Scam / 419 Operations


12 JUL 2017 From the Punch, a Nigerian newspaper: Internet fraudsters hijack police Facebook page to recruit members Afeez Hanafi Suspected Internet fraudsters, popularly called Yahoo boys, have turned the Facebook page of the Special Fraud Unit of the Nigeria Police Force into an avenue to advertise their skills. The suspects, through a series of comments, demanded between N5,000 and N50,000 from those who wanted to learn classified sites for defrauding people, especially foreigners, and offered options of online, as well as physical teaching platforms. Hundreds of persons, including students, graduates and ladies, indicated interest in learning the skills for making quick money and provided their mobile numbers on the SFU Facebook page. The comments were reactions to a post by the SFU sensitising the public to Internet fraud. The unit in the post tagged, 'Common Tricks Yahoo boys use to Swindle Foreigners Revealed,' had warned people against falling victims of the fraudsters. The post read in part, "One of the tricks they use in swindling foreigners is called 'Freestyle.' The Freestyle trick is the simplest and it is common among starters. Applying Freestyle trick, all you need to do is to open an account in any of the popular dating sites and look for someone to fall in love with you; afterwards, he or she starts paying your bills, sending hard currency." "Also, one of the major tricks, Yahoo and Sakawa boys are using to perpetuate this act is 'Over Payment.' The Over Payment trick requires a lot of processes. The Yahoo boy who uses this trick pretends to be a prospective buyer by logging into any of the popular Internet classified sites, after which he offers the person who he is buying from, a cheque as a mode of payment." "In this case, Yahoo boys have a way of persuading the seller to send the excess after issuing an over payment cheque. With this trick, a Yahoo boy can buy goods worth $1,000 and issue a cheque of $5,000. What the Yahoo boy is interested in is not the goods he claimed to be interested in, but the excess money that will be sent to him after the cheque must have been cashed." The update concluded with a slogan 'Say No to Fraud;' but what trailed the slogan was brazen defiance to the police warning, with commentators boasting of their mettle in various Internet scam sites. The comments had reached over 1,762 with 158 shares as of 8.17pm on Tuesday. In one of his comments, one Thomas Joshua, wrote, "If you are interested in G (Yahoo yahoo), message me ASAP (as soon as possible) via +2349021933459. Tutor fee is 5k (N5,000). I will teach you how to make cool money in a week and if you have interest in hacking, wire transfer, ATM card hacking etc., message me ASAP." One Kingxam Millionz stated that he ran tutorials on classified sites such as Dating, Spamming, Next of kin, Letgo and Grant, among others, with a fee ranging from N5,000 to N15,000. Another poster, Stev Emmanuel, gave out his email address and phone number, 07064229454, to intending members, saying "Hello dear friends, for those that want to be Yahoo boys, here comes your opportunity." One Desmanking Destiny, who replied Emmanuel on the SFU platform, said he was "100 per cent serious" to learn the skill. A graduate, Ajisafe Adekunle Olowolayemo, said he was jobless and was desperate to go into cybercrime. He wrote, "Please, I'm a graduate of Marine Engineering… I have been jobless for good four years. I sought jobs in so many shipping companies, but to no avail. Please, I need a boss who will teach me the rudiments and basis of Yahoo yahoo." A poster with an alias, Kvng Segzkid, said, "I am a graduate of Science Laboratory Technology. Since 2015, I have yet to get a job. I have no choice but to venture into gee (Internet fraud). I need a boss and promise to be loyal and honest with him." One Sanni Rasheed cautioned the posters on the criminal chats, saying "This act will be prosecuted under the law of the country." But one Hon Stainless Cash, dared the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and other security agencies to come after him. He said, "To all the EFCC and SARS on this page, if you intend to trace me, please do trace me or track me if you can find me and I will highly welcome you. Please, make sure you track me; for your service is highly needed." Ladies also joined in the discussion and expressed willingness to engage in Internet fraud. A commentator, Ugo Osinachi, wrote, "I want to be a gee guy. I need help from any boss please. Here is my number 09060655750; I am on WhatsApp and Facebook. Please bosses, help me out, I am serious about this." Titilayo Adetoba also said, "I want to become gee guy; any help should contact me, 09068646625. I am curious." The SFU spokesperson, ASP Lawal Audu, said the unit was aware of the comments on its Facebook page, adding that a manhunt had been launched for the posters. He said, "We are tracking them, but we don't want to speak about it publicly. We are making efforts. Scientific investigation is not something you do anyhow; otherwise, you won't get at your targets." Here is the URL of the article for as long as it is good: http://punchng.com/internet-fraudsters-hijack-police-facebook-page-to-recruit-members/ ******************************************* 11 JUL 2017 From the Punch, a Nigerian newspaper: American gets $250,000 bail for $565,000 fraud Oluwatosin Omojuyigbe An America citizen, Marco Ramirez, who was detained in Kirikiri prison for allegedly defrauding three Nigerian of $565,000, was on Monday granted $250,000 bail by a Lagos State High Court in Ikeja. Ramirez was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on 16 counts bordering on obtaining money by false pretences and conspiracy to commit fraud which he pleaded not guilty to. Justice Josephine Oyefeso said she was inclined to releasing the American on bail because prior to his first arraignment before the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Abuja on April 8, he had been kept in the EFCC custody for about 130 days. The judge also observed that the defendant was detained for another 10 days before his re-arraignment in Lagos on June 22. Justice Oyefeso held, "It is at the discretion of the court to grant bail and having considered the nature of the offence, though not a capital offence but a very serious one, the defendant is hereby admitted to bail in the sum of $250, 000 or in its naira equivalent." "The defendant shall produce two sureties who must be resident in Lagos State. One of the sureties should be a director or a board member in a reputable company." "The two sureties must have a landed property in a highbrow area of Lagos and shall present evidence of tax payment which must be verified by the Chief Registrar." "Both sureties must show evidence of viable source of livelihood and shall swear an affidavit to prove same." "The land, sea and air immigration must also be notified. The defendant must also report once a week to the EFCC office," the judge said. The judge thereafter, adjourned the matter till November 15 and 16, 2017 for continuation of trial. Here is he URL of the article, which includes a photo of Marco Ramirez, for as long as it is good: http://punchng.com/american-gets-250000-bail-for-565000-fraud/ ************************************ 4 JUL 2017 From the Nigerian Tribune, a Nigerian newspaper, by way of Odili.net: $8.4 million fraud: Ajudua granted permission to travel abroad for medical treatment Ayomide Owonibi Odekanyin - Lagos Embattled Lagos socialite and businessman, Fred Ajudua, who allegedly defrauded a former Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen. Ishaya Bamaiyi (Retd)of $8.4 million was on Monday granted leave to travel abroad for urgent medical treatment by an Ikeja High Court. Ajudua's permission to travel was sequel to an application dated May 14, 2017 filed by the defendant through his counsel, Norrison Quakers, seeking permission to travel abroad for an urgent medical surgery. Ajudua is being tried by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on a 14-count charge bothering on obtaining, under pretence. The defendant allegedly collected the money from Bamaiyi while the duo were in Kirikiri prison, Lagos. However, while addressing the court on Monday, Quakers said that his client was grievously sick and needed an urgent medical surgery which ought to be performed outside the country as directed by his doctor. Quakers said, "My Lord can tell by his appearance today in court that the defendant is seriously ill and that there is a medical report to buttress this fact." "The application brought before your Lordship is to put the court on notice that we are about to travel for a medical examination." "Your lordship will see the urgency in the affidavit of urgency attached to the motion including the original copy of the medical report from Lagos State Teaching Hospital, LUTH." "My client was in LUTH and was transferred to India but the EFCC agents refused him going there. He has been complaining of a high blood pressure and blood in stool (hematochezia) which has been persistent since 2015." "I even cautioned him not to be in court for today's trial because of the way he was looking but he insisted on coming in order not to give a wrong impression to the court." Reacting to the application, the prosecution, S. A. Atteh, said that the application, if granted, has no date informing the court when the defendant is travelling or returning. "I urge the court to reject the application since the defence gas not given any concrete or clear information regarding the type of surgery he intends to go for," Atteh said. However, in her ruling, Justice Jisephine Oyefeso noted that one of the conditions of Ajudua’s bail stipulates that the defendant is to retain his international passport should in case the need arises for him to travel for medical treatment relating to his health. She said, "On this ground, the defendant has no obligation to seek permission to travel since he has his international passport and could travel at will if he wants to." "The most important thing is that the defendant must be present in court for trial. The application to travel is therefore unnecessary to notify the court." The matter was further adjourned till July 13, 2017 for trial. Here is the URL of the article, which includes a photo of Ajudua, for as long as it is good: http://odili.net/news/source/2017/jul/4/608.html 419 Coalition Comment: Given the preceding News item of 3 JUL 2017 (scroll down) which states that Ajudua was refused permission to travel abroad for medical treatment, we don't know what to make of this conflicting report. However, that "Fast Freddie" Ajudua,one of the most (if not THE most) infamous 419ers of all time, was Ever given bail for any reason, for any charge, is of course absurd. That the man was ever allowed to retain his international passport, and ever allowed to travel abroad is simply mind-boggling. If any 419er deserves to rot in Kirikiri for the duration, "medical problems" notwithstanding, it is Fred Ajudua. If he really needs medical care, let him get it locally, or fly in a Doc to take care of it at his expense. Hold him Without bail and revoke All his passports! That's what 419 Coalition thinks about this matter...... ************************************** 3 JUL 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): $8.4m Fraud: Court Refuses Ajudua’s Application To Travel Abroad For Medicals Justice J. E. Oyefeso of the Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja, on Monday, July 3, 2017, refused an application filed by an alleged serial fraudster, Fred Ajudua, to proceed on an urgent trip abroad for medical checks. Ajudua was re-arraigned on Tuesday, May 16, 2017 on an amended 28-count charge bordering on conspiracy and obtaining by false pretence. Ajudua is facing trial alongside others who are still at large for allegedly collecting various sums of money from Lt. General Ishaya Bamaiyi (retd.), while they were both in custody at the Kirikiri Prison, Lagos. The defendant and his accomplices allegedly approached Bamaiyi, who was facing trial for the attempted murder of Alex Ibru, the late Publisher of The Guardian Newspaper, and assured him that they could secure his freedom. The offence is contrary to Section 8(a) and 1 (3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act No. 13 of 1995 as amended by Act No. 62 of 1999. Moving the application today, Ajudua's counsel, Norisson Quakers, SAN, prayed for an order of accelerated hearing to enable his client proceed on an urgent medical trip to India for a major surgery in consonance with the subsisting judgment of the Court of Appeal. While urging the court to grant the application in the interest of justice, Quakers said: "My client is critically ill and requires urgent specialized surgery in India to salvage his solitary malfunctioning kidney. He is not medically fit to stand trial." S. K. Atteh, counsel to the EFCC, had in a counter-affidavit to the application, told the court that the supporting affidavit by the defence did not state that the medical conditions of defendant had defiled all medical solutions in Nigeria. He said: "If the defendant is allowed to travel abroad or is obliged this application on the pretext of medical treatment, he will be sending fake reports of his medical state as he had done in the past". He urged the court to refuse the application. In his ruling, Justice Oyefeso described the application as "unnecessary" and adjourned to July 13, 2017 for commencement of trial. In a similar vein, Justice Oyefeso also adjourned to October 16, 2017 for hearing on three pending applications filed by Ajudua in case of $1million fraud. In the said suit, Ajudua and one Joseph Ochunor had, sometime in 1993, allegedly defrauded one Ziad Abu Zalaf of Technical International Limited, a company based in Germany of $1million. The applicant is urging the court to quash the charges against him; suspend the trial pending the final judgment of the Court of Appeal and leave to travel abroad for medical checks. Here is the URL of the Press Release, which contains a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2635-8-4m-fraud-court-refuses-ajudua-s-application-to-travel-abroad-for-medicals ******************************************************* 3 JUL 2017 From the South China Morning Post, Hong Kong, sent in by Ultrascan AGI: Scam artists in Southern China give money laundering a new meaning Foreigners and local accomplice arrested in Guangzhou for duping woman of millions with promises of 'dyed dollar notes' back to real currency The two foreigners, were are residents of Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong province, were identified by their surnames Johnson and Dodo, although their nationalities were not revealed. They convinced the victim, whom they met online, that they had a suitcase full of what looked like black paper but was actually US$1.4 million dollars worth of US banknotes that had been dyed black million and smuggled into China. They offered to sell the special "chemical agents" to wash the dye off the money, local media reported. The victim was a woman from Wuhan surnamed Li. She said that Johnson, who used the pseudonym "Anderson", demonstrated how the money was washed in front of her, according to Guangzhou’s New Express Daily. Li said that during their meeting in a hotel room, Johnson applied the chemicals to some of the black paper, and washed them in clean water. Soon the paper turned into US dollar notes. She said she believed she was looking after the money for an "American engineer" who was working on an offshore oil rig, and to whom she had lent money through the two men. The borrowed money plus a "bonus for her trouble" would be paid to her with converted cash. She paid several times for a "recovering agent", "preservatives", "shipping fees and storage fees" and "incubators" over the following months, but did not receive any money. She then called the police. The suspect repeated the trick in front of the police, and admitted they had processed and recovered genuine money in their first demonstration to Li, but the rest was just paper, the report said. The case is still under investigation. Here is the URL of the article, which includes several generic 419 related illustrations, for as long as it is good: http://www.scmp.com/news/china/society/article/2101082/scam-artists-southern-china-give-money-laundering-new-meaning ********************************************* 2 JUL 2017 From The Sun Daily, Malaysia, and AFP News, sent in by Ultrascan AGI: Benin, a Ponzi scheme and a long wait for answers COTONOU: Sadiatou used to be a well-off trader of traditional cloth at the market in Benin's economic hub of Cotonou but now sells school equipment from the doorstep of her home. In 2010 she sank more than five million CFA francs (US$8,700) (RM37,357) into an investment scheme that promised a quick profit. "It's a deposit I should never have made," she told AFP. "My business took a hit and my health as well. I've been depressed for a long time". "I was counting on the savings I'd make to expand my business. But it was useless. All my money has gone." Seven years after what was described as the biggest financial scandal in Benin's history was revealed, 20 people this week went on trial. Sadiatou is one of nearly 150,000 people that the International Monetary Fund estimates were defrauded of more than 150 billion CFA francs in the Investment Consultancy and Computing Services (ICC Services) case. Some estimates, however, say as many as 300,000 people were lured into parting with their hard-earned or borrowed cash and life-savings on the promise of 150% to 200% per quarter returns. Ponzi scheme Despite repeated warnings about investing in so-called pyramid or Ponzi schemes, such scams are becoming commonplace throughout Africa. Frank Engelsman, who heads the Amsterdam- and Paris-based Ultrascan, which specialises in detecting international financial fraud, says such schemes are booming. "First, because the infrastructure in big cities of Africa is improving rapidly, both phone as well as internet infrastructure - and that's what these fraudsters need." "Second, because in those cities... police are not trained to handle internet international communication crimes that always cross a border between the fraudster and the victim." In Gabon, a business run by a Pentecostal church pastor, Yves David Mapakou, allegedly swindled up to 30,000 French and Gabonese clients by promising profits on investments. A complaint was lodged in Paris in August last year. Africa's most populous nation Nigeria remains the undisputed champion of fraud, having assiduously developed "419" scams over the years - a reference to the relevant section of the criminal code. Victims from around the world have been duped into handing over billions of dollars through a barrage of unsolicited email appeals and job offers as well as promises of marriage. Engelsman said this type of fraud has "spread from Nigeria to neighbouring countries" in West Africa, taking advantage of the lack of capacity of law enforcement agencies to investigate. "Like most bad things like crime, they tend to spread when not put to a halt, widen their scope to improve effect/income." he added. Development can even play a part. "It's easier when the infrastructure is good, in countries where also the chamber of commerce is registering companies easily and bank accounts are opened, based on one or more registrations," he added. The Ponzi scheme in Benin – likened to the one run by Bernie Madoff in the United States that saw the financier jailed – involved paying initial investors with the money of new clients. Textile worker Aline Aklassato said she had "no reason at all not to believe" the scheme would not work. "Colleagues and friends had made deposits and received dividends," she added. "I got dividends myself for two months of 300,000 CFA francs before the difficulties started." Criminal liability As the case wound its way to trial, few of the alleged victims were able to attend court hearings. The current trial will only look at establishing criminal liability. But for salesman Leandros Koudenoukpo, "the key question is reimbursement". Benin's government in 2010 launched a compensation scheme for victims through the sale of assets seized from ICC Services. But only a few benefited. The 20 defendants in the dock are facing charges of conspiracy, defrauding the public and practising illegal banking and micro-finance. Key questions that need answering are how were ICC Services and other firms involved are able to prosper over the years, despite having no authorisation to run financial services. Did they have state backing? Benin's president at the time, former banker Thomas Boni Yayi, and several high-ranking officials were at the time accused of complicity but none is officially under investigation. Seven years may have passed and Benin's government has changed. But more time is still needed for a resolution. The trial opened on Thursday but on Friday it was adjourned to a date to be fixed because of a lack of an expert psychiatric witness and documents. - AFP Here is the URL of the article, for as long as it is good: http://www.thesundaily.my/news/2017/07/02/benin-ponzi-scheme-and-long-wait-answers The article was also widely reprinted etc. elsewehere, including: North Africa: http://menafn.com/1095590282/Benin-a-Ponzi-scheme-and-a-long-wait-for-answers Singapore: https://sg.news.yahoo.com/benin-ponzi-scheme-long-wait-answers-035101004.html And in French Language: http://information.tv5monde.com/afrique/nouveau-report-du-proces-icc-services-l-affaire-madoff-la-beninoise-178369 ******************************************* 30 JUN 2017 From the International Business Times (UK), sent in by Ultrascan AGI: Ruthless online romance scams target lonely hearts on an industrial scale Online scammers are using fake profiles to trick victims into sending cash. By Jason Murdock Online fraudsters using fake identities on dating websites and social media networks to trick victims out of their money has become a lucrative underground industry and is only set to grow over the next 18 months. The fraud, known as a romance scam, is being bolstered by leaks from major dating and pornography websites which can reveal a victim's intimate secrets, according to the UK National Crime Agency (NCA). Data breaches, for example at Ashley Madison and AdultFriendFinder, can lead to blackmail and extortion, it added. It is "almost certain" that the UK will be targeted with more romance scams and highly targeted email compromise campaigns over the next 18 months, the agency warned in its National Strategic Assessment, released to the public on Thursday 29 June. "Social engineering is highly likely to continue to rise as an attack vector, originating most notably from West Africa," it added. In these social engineering attacks, which often rely on direct messages and grooming tactics, victims believe they are talking to a genuine person. How romance scams work The online fraudster orchestrating a romance scam plays the long game and will work to earn the trust of their victim over time. Once this is gained, the culprit pretends to experience a life-threatening or heartbreaking event before asking the victim for financial aid. Once a payment is sent, the scheme then becomes more relentless as the scammer attempts to bleed as much money as possible by creating more fake situations - be it the death of a loved one or being stranded in a foreign country after being robbed. The statistics show it works. Figures released in January by the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau revealed there were 3,389 victims of romance fraud in 2016, losing a combined total of more than UK Pounds 39m ($50m). This was a rise from the previous year, when 3,363 victims lost a total of just under UK Pounds 26m ($33m). Meanwhile, in 2016, the average loss for each victim was 11,500 Pounds compared with 7,731 Pounds in 2015. At least 39% of those who were tricked are men, the figures suggested. The victims are mounting There are numerous victims who have spoken out about being fooled by romance scams over the years - and for some the personal consequences are more severe that financial ruin. In March this year, 54-year-old Pam Wareing was taken to court after allegedly stealing more than 500,000 Pounds from her employer, a UK solicitor, to send to a conman she met online. That case was referred to a higher court and remains under investigation. Another high-profile case was that of 68-year-old Judith Lathlean, a university professor who fell victim to a romance scam in 2015 via an online dating website. Lathlean lost a total of 140,000 Pounds after a man using the name John Porter online convinced her to send it to him. "Porter" claimed his house had been broken into, resulting in the loss of his passport and phone. He claimed to have a vast fortune of 10m Pounds that was suddenly available but only if someone could go to Amsterdam and pay a fee to release the money. It was a complex web of lies. "A lot of the online dating fraudsters we know are abroad," Steve Proffitt, deputy head of Action Fraud, told the BBC earlier this year. They're in West Africa, Eastern Europe and it's very difficult for British law enforcement to take action against them in those jurisdictions." Luckily, there are a number of steps you can take to protect yourself from romance scams, as well as a number of key signs to look out for if you are suspicious of someone online. The advice comes courtesy of Action Fraud, the primary UK reporting centre for scams and cybercrime. How to protect yourself: Avoid giving away too many personal details when dating online. Revealing your full name, date of birth and home address may lead to your identity being stolen. Never send or receive money or give away your bank details to someone you've only met online, no matter how much you trust them or believe their story. Pick a reputable dating website and use the site's messaging service. Fraudsters want to quickly switch to social media or texting so there's no evidence of them asking you for money. If you have struck up a relationship with someone online, you should be concerned if they are asking a lot of personal questions but never interested in talking about themselves, Action Fraud said. Additionally, it is advised to reverse image search their picture to make sure it's not stolen. "What is striking from this year's assessment are the themes running through the crime types," NCA deputy director general Matthew Horne said in a statement at the release of the report. "Organised criminal networks are using online methods to defraud and extort," he warned. Here is the URL of the article, for as long as it is good: http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/ruthless-online-romance-scams-target-lonely-hearts-industrial-scale-1628494 ******************************************** 23 JUN 2017 From Graphic.com, Ghana: An Ikeja High Court on Thursday remanded an American citizen, Marco Ramirez, at Kirikiri Maximum Prison for allegedly defrauding three Nigerians in a $565,000 green card and investment scam. Mr. Ramirez was remanded following his not-guilty plea to a 16-count charge of obtaining money under false presences. He was arraigned by the EFCC. The EFCC prosecutor, V. O. Aigboje, alleged that the accused, managing director of three companies – USA Now Plc., Eagleford Instalodge Group and USA Now Capital Group – committed the offences between February 2013 and August 2013. Mr. Aigboje said Mr. Ramirez fraudulently received $545,000 from Godson Echejue to invest in his company, Eagleford Instalodge Group, in order to procure an American green card (residence permit) for him (Echejue). He also allegedly received $10,000 from Abubakar Umar through a non-existent investment programme in the U.S., which was billed to make Mr. Umar eligible to obtain an American passport. The EFCC also accused Mr. Ramirez of illegally receiving $10,000 from one Olukayode Sodimu under the pretext that the funds were facilitation fees with the American Immigration Services for an American green card. . After Mr. Ramirez took his plea, Mr. Aigboje requested that he be taken from the custody of EFCC to prison custody. "There are no bed spaces available in the commission. I apply that the defendant be remanded in prison custody," she said. . Chukwudi Maduka, the defence counsel, in his submission, requested that Mr. Ramirez be kept in the custody of EFCC and not in the custody of the Nigerian Prison Service. Justice Josephine Oyefeso, however, rejected Mr. Maduka’s request and ordered that Mr. Ramirez be remanded in prison. "The proper place for remand is prison custody and I so order. The case is, hereby, adjourned to July 3 for hearing of the defendant's bail application," she said. Credit: Vanguard (a major Nigerian newspaper) Here is the URL of the article, for as long as it is good: http://www.graphic.com.gh/international/international-news/american-man-remanded-in-lagos-for-defrauding-nigerians.html ********************************************** 22 JUN 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Arraigns Impostor The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has arraigned one Promise Tochi Nwalozie (a. k. a Ibrahim Lamorde) and Ohaji Ujunwa Raymond, before Justice H. I. O Oshomah of the Federal High Court, sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State on a 9-count charge bordering on conspiracy and obtaining money by false presence to the tune of $1,330.00 (USD). Nwalozie, while posing as the former Executive Chairman of the EFCC, Mr. Ibrahim Lamorde, was arrested alongside six other Internet fraud suspects at Rumuagholu, Port Harcourt, Rivers State on 6 August, 2016, in a sting operation by operatives of the EFCC. Nwalozie was using the identity of Lamorde to send scam mails to foreigners, mostly Europeans and Americans and in the process, extorted sizeable amount of foreign currencies from them. His weapon of fraudulent interaction with his victims was a fake electronic copy of the identity card of the former EFCC boss. He equally assumed another name, Gabriel Giese, to ply his nefarious activities. This is in addition to posing as Barrister Peter Jackson, a spurious lawyer working with the National Judicial Council, NJC in Nigeria. As a "lawyer", he was defrauding his victims by assuring them that he would help in the recovery of money lost to different Nigerian cyber fraudsters. To do this, Jackson was collecting various sums of money as service charges from his victims. Some of his victims are: Betty G. E, an American and Georgina M, an Australian. Raymond was one of his partners in crime. Six other suspected fraudsters arrested with Nwalozie have been charged separately. Count one of the charge read: "that you Promise Tochi Nwalozie (a. k. a) Barrister Peter Jackson, Gebriel Giese, Ibrahim Lamorde and Ohaji Ujunwa Raymond sometime in July, 2016, at Port Harcourt, Rivers State, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did conspire among yourselves to commit felony to wit: Obtaining Money by False Pretence and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 8 (a) and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006." Another count read: "that you Promise Tochi Nwalozie (a. k. a) Barrister Peter Jackson, Gebriel Giese, Ibrahim Lamorde, on or about the 6th August, 2016, at Port Harcourt, Rivers State, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, with intent to defraud, did obtain the sum of $500.00 (USD) from one Georgina M, an Australian under the pretence that the said sum formed part payment for the repatriation of her funds which s he lost to fraudsters in Nigeria, which pretext you knew to be false, and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the said Act". The defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges when they were read to them. In view of their pleas, prosecution counsel, Mustapha Tanko Iko asked the court to fix a date for the commencement of trial and that the defendants be remanded in prison custody. However, counsel to the two defendants, P. O. K. Osuji, told the court that he had filed bail applications for his clients and served same on the prosecution. He urged the court to grant his prayers. Iko acknowledged the applications and did not oppose them. Justice Oshomah adjourned the case to 6 July, 2017 for bail hearing and ordered that the defendants be remanded in prison custody pending the determination of their bail. Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2615-efcc-arraigns-impostor ********************************** 21 JUN 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): Court Remands Two in Prison For Internet Fraud The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Wednesday, June 21, 2017, arraigned one suspected Internet fraudster, Folusho Oguntoyinbo, also known as Sydney, before Justice Hakeem Olatunde Oshodi of the Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja on a three-count charge bordering on possession of fraudulent documents and obtaining money by false pretence to the tune of N700, 000(Seven Hundred T housand Naira). One of the counts reads: "That you, Folusho Oguntoyinbo (a.k.a. Sydney) sometime in 2016 in Lagos within the Ikeja judicial division, with intent to defraud, obtained the sum of Seven Hundred Thousand Naira from Roy Torgerson by falsely representing to him that you were Sydney A., female, which representations you knew to be false." The 31-year-old suspected fraudster, however, pleaded not guilty when the charges were read to him. In view of his plea, the prosecution counsel, Ayanfeoluwa Ogunsina, asked the court for a trial date and pleaded that the accused be remanded in prison custody. However, the defence counsel, M.O. Lawal, told the court of a pending application for bail of his client. Justice Oshodi adjourned the matter to July 13, 2017 for hearing of the bail application and ordered the accused to be remanded in prison custody. Meanwhile, the EFCC also arraigned a member of a syndicate of Internet fraudsters, Ojo Adedayo, a.k.a. Kate, before Justice Oshodi on a three-count charge bordering on possession of fraudulent documents. One of the counts reads: "That you, Ojo Adedayo (a.k.a. Kate) sometime in 2016 in Lagos within the Ikeja judicial division, with intent to defraud, had in your possession a document titled "Me", which document you knew contained false pretence." However, the 22-year-old suspect pleaded not guilty when the charges were read to him. Justice Oshodi adjourned the matter to July 13, 2017 for hearing of the bail application and remanded the suspect in prison custody. Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2613-court-remands-two-in-prison-for-internet-fraud ************************************ 2 MAY 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Arraigns Two for Euro 88, 000 Internet Scam The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Tuesday, May 2, 2017 arraigned the duo of Ajani Isaac Adedotun, (a.k.a. Clara Williams and Lara Williams) and Adesina Segun Adedeji before Justice A.D. Oladimeji of the Osun State High Court sitting in Ede, on a 50-count charge bordering on conspiracy and obtaining money by false pretence. The petitioner alleged that the victim, M. Wassink, a Dutch citizen, was defrauded of over Euro 88,000 in an Internet romance scam. One of the counts reads: "Ajani Isaac Adedotun (a.k.a Clara Williams, Lara Williams) and Adesina Segun Adedeji, on or about the 5th day of March, 2014 at Ile Ife, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, with intent to defraud, obtained the sum of €23,000 (Twenty-three Thousand Euro) through Adesina Segun Adedeji's Skye Bank account from M. Wassink, under the false pretence that you are a female from Belgium and had travelled to Nigeria to buy some gemstones and bracelets and that the said sum of money represented fees for the officials securing the gemstones for you, which representation you knew to be false." The accused persons, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges when they were read to them. In view of their pleas, the prosecuting counsel, Vera Agboje, asked the court for a trial date and prayed the court to remand the accused in prison custody. However, counsel to the accused persons, Sanyaolu S. Akinyele and T. S. Adegboyega, respectively prayed the court to grant their clients bail. Justice Oladimeji adjourned the case to May 16, 2017 for hearing of the bail applications and ordered the accused to be remanded in Ilesa prison custody. Here is the URL of the press release, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2502-efcc-arraigns-two-for-88-000-internet-scam ****************************************** 18 APR 2017 From Nigeriana.org (probebly based in Nigeria, this is not clear on the site): Oh My!! Nigerian Husband And Wife, 'The Ogundeles', Sentenced To 252 Months Jail Term In The United States For Internet Dating Scam!! By Mathew According to report from United States, a United States District Judge, Paul W. Grimm has sentenced Gbenga Ogundele aka Benson Ogundele, age 58; of Laurel, Maryland to 234 months in prison, and sentenced his wife, Moji Popoola, aka Mojisola Oluwakemi Tin Popoola/Moji T. Popoola, age 42, also of Laurel, to 18 months in prison, each followed by three years of supervised release. They were jailed for conspiracies to commit wire fraud and money laundering arising from a scheme to defraud vulnerable victims of millions of dollars. Ogundele was also convicted of aggravated identity theft in connection with the scheme. Judge Grimm ordered that Mojisola Popoola's supervised release is to be served in home detention. He also ordered Ogundele to forfeit $2,195,103.36, and ordered Mojisola Popoola to forfeit approximately $165,000 and to pay restitution of $34,100. On March 20, 2017, Judge Grimm sentenced Moji Popoola's brother, Babatunde Emmanuel Popoola, aka Emmanuel Popoola/Tunde Popoola, age 34, of Bowie, Maryland, to 12 years in prison, on the same charges. He ordered Babatunde Popoola to pay restitution of $465,170.76. Ogundele and the Popoolas were convicted on November 18, 2016, after a 17-day trial. In a related case, Funmilayo Joyce Shodeke, age 67, of Burtonsville, Maryland, pleaded guilty on March 22, 2017 to conducting an unlicensed money transmitting business, and was sentenced to 13 months’ probation, and ordered to forfeit $29,900. The sentences were announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein and Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. According to the evidence presented at trial, and co-conspirators’ plea agreements, from January 2011 to May 18, 2015, members of the conspiracy searched online dating websites to initiate romantic relationships with vulnerable male and female individuals. They phoned, emailed, texted and used internet chat messenger services to form romantic relationships with the victims, who lived in Maryland and around the country. Members of the conspiracy used false stories and promises to convince the victims to provide money to the conspirators, including fake hospital bills, plane trips to visit the victims, problems with overseas businesses and foreign taxes. Ogundele, the Popoolas, co-conspirators Olusegun Charles Ogunseye, Olufemi Wilfred Williams, Adeyinka Olubunmi Awolaja and others opened bank accounts, called "drop accounts," in order to receive millions of dollars from the victims. The victims provided money to the defendants as a result of the false stories and promises, either depositing money directly into drop accounts controlled by the defendants, or by checks sent to the conspirators. The payments from victims ranged from $1,720 to $50,000. Ogundele, Babatunde Popoola, and others used victims' names, bank account numbers or driver’s licenses in furtherance of the fraud scheme. Ogundele, the Popoolas, Ogunseye, Williams, Awolaja and their co-conspirators dispersed money received from the victims by transferring funds to other accounts controlled by the conspirators, by obtaining cashier’s checks, and by writing checks to individuals or entities, in order to conceal the nature, source, and control of those assets. Co-conspirator Victor Oyewumi Oloyede, age 42, of Laurel, Maryland, was also convicted at trial for his role in the fraud scheme. Oloyede was sentenced to 234 months in prison. Co-conspirators Olusegun Charles Ogunseye, age 59 of Laurel, Maryland, Olufemi Wilfred Williams, age 28, of Owings Mills, Maryland, and Adeyinka Olubunmi Awolaja, Jr., age 34, of New Carollton, Maryland, each pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit money laundering. Judge Grimm scheduled sentencing for Awolaja on June 12, 2017, for Ogunseye on July 25, 2017, and for Williams on July 27, 2017, all at 2:30 p.m. The Maryland Identity Theft Working Group has been working since 2006 to foster cooperation among local, state, federal, and institutional fraud investigators and to promote effective prosecution of identity theft schemes by both state and federal prosecutors. This case, as well as other cases brought by members of the Working Group, demonstrates the commitment of law enforcement agencies to work with financial institutions and businesses to address identity fraud, identify those who compromise personal identity information, and protect citizens from identity theft. The conviction is part of the efforts undertaken in connection with the US President's Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force, established to wage an aggressive, coordinated and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. attorneys' offices, and state and local partners, it’s the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud. Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets; and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions and other organizations. Since fiscal year 2009, the Justice Department has filed over 18,000 financial fraud cases against more than 25,000 defendants. United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the FBI for its work in the investigation and thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas P. Windom, who is prosecuting the case. Here is the URL of the article, which includes lots of photos, for as long as it is good: http://nigeriana.org/news/metro-news/oh-nigerian-husband-wife-ogundeles-sentenced-252-months-jail-term-united-states-internet-dating-scam/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=facebook ************************************************ 10 APR 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Arraigns Alleged Female Internet Fraudster for Euro 132,000 Fraud The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Friday, April 7, 2017 arraigned one Suzan Vega Ochuko before Justice P. I. Ajoku of the Federal High Court sitting in Benin, Edo State on a three count charge bordering on conspiracy and obtaining by false pretence. The defendant and one Tony Uyimwen also known as Alex Ethan (now at large) allegedly operating with a pseudo name Alex Ethan contacted one Mrs. Beatrice AUF DER MAUR from St. Gallen, Switzerland via Facebook and defrauded her of Euro 132,000 (One Hundred and Thirty-Two Thousand Euro). Maur was allegedly hoodwinked into a love relationship with the defendant who subsequently defrauded her of the said amount under the pretence of executing a non-existent contract. The accused pleaded not guilty to the charge. One of the Counts reads: "That you, Suzan Vega Ochuko "F" and Tony Uyimwen "M" (a.k.a) Alex Ethan (now at large) on or about the 11th of March, 2016 at Benin, Edo State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court with intent to defraud when you made a false representation that you are Alex Ethan to one Mrs. Beatrice AUF DER MAUR and obtained the sum of 65, 000.00 (Euro), account number: 2024290579 of one Collins Peter which pretext you knew was false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act." Another count reads: "That you, Suzan Vega Ochuko "F" and Tony Uyimwen "M" (a.k.a) Alex Ethan (now at large) on or about the 18th of March, 2016 at Benin, Edo State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court with intent to defraud did obtain the sum of 67, 000.00 (Euro) under false pretence from one Mrs. Beatrice AUF DER MAUR account number: 2022547286 which pretext you knew was false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act." In view of her plea, counsel to EFCC, M. T. Iko asked the court to fix a date for commencement of trial. The defence counsel, Ekhator Ogiegbaen told the court that he had a pending bail application for his client. He pleaded with the court to grant his client bail as she will not jump bail and that the defendant was a nursing mother. Though the prosecuting counsel opposed the bail, Justice Ajoku granted the defendant bail in the sum of N 1 million with two sureties in like sum. The sureties must be civil servant not below grade level 12 or two sureties with landed property within the jurisdiction of the court. The sureties must deposit original title of their document with the court while the civil servant must produce an official letter from his superior from his office. The documents are to be verified by the prosecution. The matter has been adjourned to the June 14, 2017 for trial while the defendant is to be remanded in prison custody pending the perfection of her bail. Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2460-efcc-arraigns-alleged-female-internet-fraudster-for-132-000-fraud ********************************************* 5 APR 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Smashes Notorious 419 Syndicate, Recovers fake $570,000USD The Kaduna Zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC have arrested members of a notorious syndicate of fraudsters made of four Nigerians and one Nigerien who specialise in duping innocent persons of their hard earned monies. Those arrested are Salisu Rabiu, a.k.a Maimagani; Ibrahim Idris, a.k.a Dankano; Magaji Musa (Nigerien) a.k.a Maishayi; Haruna Abdullahi,a.k.a Balogun and Abubakar Umar, a.k.a Fulani. The suspects were arrested in a bush along Sabon Gari, Kurmin Kogi, Ikara Local Government Area of Kaduna state. A search of their hide out which is suspected to be a kidnappers' den led to the startling discovery of a sum of five hundred and seventy thousand ($570,000) fake US dollars and some charms. The five man gang met their waterloo when they conspired among themselves to lure an unsuspecting victim into believing that some unclaimed boxes containing huge amount of USD were kept with some herdsmen believed to be accomplices by an unidentified politician. Doubtful of the story, the would-be victim contacted the Commission. The operatives of the Commission upon receipt of the intelligence swung into action and arrested the gang members in their hideouts. All the suspects are in custody while investigation continues. The Commission wishes to use this opportunity to warn members of the public to be wary of any get-rich-quick offer in order not to be a victim of scam. However, those who had fallen victim to the nefarious activities of this syndicate are enjoined to report to the Commission’s office located at No.4 Wurno Road Kaduna State. Here s the URL of the press release for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2447-efcc-smashes-notorious-419-syndicate-recovers-fake-570-000usd 419 Coalition Comment: We hope that the recovered $570K is promptly repatriated to victims of this 419 syndicate. *************************************************** 31 MAR 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): Internet Fraudster Bags Two Year Imprisonment Justice P. I. Ajoku of the Federal High Court, Benin City on Thursday March 30, convicted and sentenced one Obinna Nnamdi, an internet fraudster to two years imprisonment for offences bordering on conspiracy and obtaining by false pretence. The convict who was arraigned on February 19, 2013 on a two count charge was found guilty on both counts and sentenced to two years imprisonment on each of the count. The sentences are to run concurrently. One of the counts reads: "That you, Nnamdi Obinna and Dennis Osagie {now at large} on or about October 2012, at Benin City under the jurisdiction of this honourable court, with intent to defraud did obtain the sum of one thousand five hundred euros from one Helena Anderson under the false pretence that you are Christer Kelly, a British citizen, and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 1(1) (a)of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section1 (3) of the said Act". In the course of trial, the Commission called two witnesses and tendered about 15 exhibits while the defence called only one witness. Justice Ajoku in her judgment held that the Commission proved its case beyond reasonable doubt and therefore convicted the accused accordingly. The convict is one of the several suspected internet fraudsters handed over to the Commission by the 4th Brigade of the Nigeria Army, Benin City on January 22, 2013. Two others suspects, Osagie Aghedo Bliss and Amegor Ovenseri had been convicted and sentenced by the court. Here is the URL of the article for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2434-internet-fraudster-bags-two-year-imprisonment *************************************** 27 MAR 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Docks Suspected Internet Fraudster The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on March 27, 2017, arraigned one Gbenga Yusuf John, a suspected Internet fraudster, before Justice A. M. Nicol-Clay of the State High Court sitting in Igbosere, Lagos on a three-count charge bordering on conspiracy and forgery. The accused person, while posing as an American working in Nigeria, conned a U.S. lady whom he met on a dating site by claiming that he owned a number of rental properties in Southwest Florida, USA. Upon their meeting, the accused person allegedly told the victim that he was currently in Africa to give aid to victims of Ebola disease and sought her assistance in managing his rental deposit while he was away. Consequently, the victim allegedly processed the rental deposits and received thousand of dollars in postal money order mailed directly to her by the accused person. The unsuspecting victim allegedly deposited all the cheques, acquire cash and then transferred the funds through Western Union to Yusuf. One of the counts reads: "Gbenga Yusuf John on or about the 26th day of February, 2006 in Lagos within the Lagos Judicial Division, had in your possession a document dated Tuesday, February 3, 2015 in which you represented yourself as James Carter, born and raised in United State of America but presently reside in Nigeria where you are doing electronic business which representation you knew or ought to have known to be false having regard to the circumstances of this case." The accused person pleaded not guilty to the charges. In view of his plea, the prosecution counsel, M.Aliyu, asked the court for a trial date and prayed that the accused person be remanded in prison custody. However, counsel to the accused, S.O. Obaje, who did object to the submissions of the prosecution, pleaded with the court for a short date to file his application for bail. After listening to both parties, Justice Nicol-Clay remanded the accused person in prison custody and adjourned the matter to June 20, 2017 for hearing of the bail application and the continuation of trial. Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2415-efcc-docks-suspected-internet-fraudster ******************************************** 17 MAR 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): Man Bags Six Years Jail Term For N7.8m love Scam The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Friday, March 17, 2017, secured the conviction and sentencing of an Internet fraudster, Akintunde Vincent Abiodun, a.k.a. Christopher Williams, before Justice Oluwatoyin Ipaye of the Lagos State High Court, Ikeja. The 37-year-old was arraigned on January 23, 2017 on an amended 12-count charge of stealing and forgery to the tune of N7, 806, 093.00(Seven Million, Eight Hundred and Six Thousand, and Ninety Three Naira). Abiodun's walk to jail began after he presented himself as Christopher Williams to his victim, D. Bonni, whom he met on a dating site on the Internet. The convict, as part of his tricks, had told to Bonni that he inherited gemstones worth $18, 050,000((Eighteen Million and Fifty Thousand United States Dollars) from his late father in the United Kingdom. He also forged an American passport with which he convinced his victim of his purported nationality. Consequently, the convict dishonestly received various sums of money, at different times, from his victim. When he was arraigned, he pleaded not guilty to the charges when they were read to him, thereby setting the stage for his trial. The prosecution counsel, Ola Sesan, tendered several documents that were admitted in evidence and presented witnesses who testified against the accused. In view of this, the convict later filed an application for plea bargaining before the court. Delivering his judgment today, Justice Ipaye, found the convit guilty and jailed three years each on counts 1 to 11 of stealing. The convict was also found guilty and jailed three years each on count 12 of forgery. The sentences are to run separately from the date of arraignment. Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2401-man-bags-six-years-jail-term-for-n7-8m-love-scam *************************************** 14 MAR 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Arraigns Four for $10, 000 Oil Scam The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Monday, March 13, 2017 arraigned the trio of Emmanuel Onubogu, Onyeka Godday and Mamudu Musa alongside their company, Zirconafrik Limited, before Justice O. A. Taiwo of the Lagos State High Court sitting in Igbosere, Lagos on a two-count charge bordering on conspiracy and obtaining by false pretence to the tune of $10, 000.00 (Ten Thousand United States Dollars). The defendants allegedly approached the complainant, Adewale Olaiya, requesting the sum of $10, 000, which they said they needed as "authentication fee" for one million barrels of crude oil purportedly allocated to them by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC. However, the defendants allegedly became elusive after receiving the money from the complainant. One of the counts reads: "That you, Emmanuel Onubogu, Onyeka Godday, Mamudu Musa and Zirconafrik Limited sometime in November, 2013 within Lagos in the Lagos Judicial Division, with intent to defraud, obtained the sum of USD10, 000.00 (Ten Thousand United States Dollars) from Mr. Adewale Olaiya through Zirconafrik Limited’s Guarantee Trust Bank account number: 0023950101 under the false pretence that the money represented the authentication fee for one million barrels of crude oil onboard MT Patroclus allocated to you for sale by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) which pretence you knew was false." The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges when they were read to them. In view of their plea, counsel to EFCC, M. S. Usman, asked the court for a trial date and urged that the defendants be remanded in prison custody. However, counsels to the defendants, pleaded with the court to grant their clients bail. The prosecuting counsel did not oppose the applications. Consequently, Justice Taiwo adjourned to March 22, 2017 for hearing on bail applications and ordered the defendants to be remanded in the EFCC custody. Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2391-efcc-arraigns-four-for-10-000-oil-scam **************************************** 14 MAR 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC: EFCC Arraigns Man for $3,650 Fraud The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Monday, March 13, 2017 arraigned one Iwuala Ikechukwu Brown before Justice J. O. Oyefeso of the Lagos State High Court sitting in Ikeja, Lagos on one-count charge bordering on obtaining by false pretence to the tune of $3,650. The count reads: "That you, Iwuala Ikechukwu Brown, between August, 2013 and November 23, 2013 at Lagos within the Ikeja Judicial Division, with intent to defraud, did obtain the gross sum of $3,650 (Three Thousand Six Hundred and Fifty United States of America Dollars) from Thomas Noblin of the United States of America by falsely representing that you are David Walter of Oregon, United States of America, which representation you knew to be false." He pleaded not guilty when the charge was read to him. In view of his plea, counsel to EFCC, Anita Imo, asked the court for a trial date and prayed that the defendant be remanded in prison custody. However, counsel to the defendant, U. C. Chikelue, urged the court to grant the accused bail. Justice Oyefeso adjourned to April 11, 2017 for commencement of trial and ordered that the defendant be remanded in Ikoyi prison. Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2390-efcc-arraigns-man-for-3-650-fraud ******************************************** 1 MAR 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Arraigns Suspected Fraudster Over N2.5m Fraud The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Wednesday, March 1, 2017 arraigned one Abdulkarim Usman before Justice S. L. Shuaibu of Federal High Court sitting in Kaduna on a 3-count charge of fraud to the tune of N2.5million. The complainant, one Mukhtar, alleged that sometime in 2016, he accosted Usman to order for Honda V6 from Cotonou, Benin Republic. According to Mukhtar, a sum of N2million was transferred to the account of Usman in a new generation bank, which the accused acknowledged upon receipt. But, Usman neither supplied the car nor refunded the money. While investigation into the matter was going on, another complaint was again lodged against same Usman. This time, he allegedly connived with his brother, Inusa Abdulkarim, who has remained elusive, to defraud one Taufiq Kailani Mohammed to the tune of N593,000 (five hundred and ninety three thousand naira) under the pretext that he had secured a contract from the Nigeria Communication Commission, NCC, for supply of engine oil. Mohammed, without doubt, sent the said sum to Usman through one of his sisters, but l ater discovered that it was a phony deal. One of the counts reads: "That you, Abdulkarim Usman (m) sometime in 2016 in Kaduna within the Kaduna Judicial Division of the Federal High Court, with intent to defraud did obtain the sum of N2million from one Muktar Sani under the false pretence that you are capable to supply him with Honda V6 one door and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Related Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act". The accused person pleaded not guilty to the charge. Counsel to EFCC, Saidi Joshua, urged the court to fix a date for trial to commence, but the defence counsel through an oral application asked for bail of the accused which was rejected by the court. Justice Shuaibu adjourned to March 8, 2017 for hearing on bail application and ordered the accused to be remanded in prison custody. Here is the URL of the press release, which contains a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2363-efcc-arraigns-suspected-fraudster-over-n2-5m-fraud **************************************** 27 FEB 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): $330,000 Fraud: Appeal Court Affirms Conviction of Ex-Lagos Court’s Registrar, Oluronke Rosolu The Lagos Division of the Court of Appeal has dismissed an application filed by a former Lagos court registrar, Oluronke Rosulu, who was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment by an Ikeja High Court for defrauding a former Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Ishaya Bamaiyi( retd.) of $330,000. Rosolu had been convicted by Justice Lateef Lawal-Akapo of the Lagos High Court, Ikeja on the two-count charge of conspiracy and obtaining money by false pretences brought against her by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on December 21, 2015. Consequently, the appellant, through her lawyer filed a notice of appeal on December 30, 2015, challenging her conviction. However, in a judgement delivered today, the Court of Appeal dismissed her appeal and affirmed the decision of the lower court. Rosulu had aided Fred Ajudua, a one-time Lagos socialite, to defraud Bamiayi when they were both remanded at the Kirikiri Maximum Prison, Lagos for different offences. The prosecution had told Justice Lawal-Akapo that Ajudua made a false representation to Bamaiyi that the $330,000 was the professional fees for the law firm of Afe Babalola and Co. to facilitate Bamaiyi’s release from prison, a claim which the firm denied. During the trial, Rosulu had denied going to the Kirikiri Maximum Prisons or knowing Ajudua. However, counsel to the prosecution presented a number of witnesses who testified that Rosulu went to the prison on different occasions to collect the money from Bamaiyi on behalf of Ajudua. While delivering her judgement, Justice Lawal-Akapo had said: "The representation that she never collected $330,000 from the complainant is deceptive; the accused could not provide a strong alibi for her whereabouts when the fraud occurred." "I find the accused guilty as charged. As a registrar of court, the accused should have been an image maker of the judiciary, but she acted in the contrary." "On count one, I sentence the accused to 10 years imprisonment and on count two I sentence the accused to 10 years imprisonment." "Both sentences are to run concurrently." Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2352-330-000-fraud-appeal-court-affirms-conviction-of-ex-lagos-court-s-registrar-oluronke-rosolu *************************************************** 24 FEB 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): $330,000 Fraud: Appeal Court Affirms Conviction of Ex-Lagos Court's Registrar, Oluronke Rosolu The Lagos Division of the Court of Appeal has dismissed an application filed by a former Lagos court registrar, Oluronke Rosulu, who was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment by an Ikeja High Court for defrauding a former Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Ishaya Bamaiyi( retd.) of $330,000. Rosolu had been convicted by Justice Lateef Lawal-Akapo of the Lagos High Court, Ikeja on the two-count charge of conspiracy and obtaining money by false pretences brought against her by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on December 21, 2015. Consequently, the appellant, through her lawyer filed a notice of appeal on December 30, 2015, challenging her conviction. However, in a judgement delivered today, the Court of Appeal dismissed her appeal and affirmed the decision of the lower court. Rosulu had aided Fred Ajudua, a one-time Lagos socialite, to defraud Bamiayi when they were both remanded at the Kirikiri Maximum Prison, Lagos for different offences. The prosecution had told Justice Lawal-Akapo that Ajudua made a false representation to Bamaiyi that the $330,000 was the professional fees for the law firm of Afe Babalola and Co. to facilitate Bamaiyi’s release from prison, a claim which the firm denied. During the trial, Rosulu had denied going to the Kirikiri Maximum Prisons or knowing Ajudua. However, counsel to the prosecution presented a number of witnesses who testified that Rosulu went to the prison on different occasions to collect the money from Bamaiyi on behalf of Ajudua. While delivering her judgement, Justice Lawal-Akapo had said: "The representation that she never collected $330,000 from the complainant is deceptive; the accused could not provide a strong alibi for her whereabouts when the fraud occurred." "I find the accused guilty as charged. As a registrar of court, the accused should have been an image maker of the judiciary, but she acted in the contrary." "On count one, I sentence the accused to 10 years imprisonment and on count two I sentence the accused to 10 years imprisonment." "Both sentences are to run concurrently." Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo, for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2352-330-000-fraud-appeal-court-affirms-conviction-of-ex-lagos-court-s-registrar-oluronke-rosolu 419 Coalition wonders: How in the world ole Fast Freddie Ajudua managed to generate the energy to orchestrate this 419, seeing as how the man has been ostensibly on death's door for years now.... :) ******************************************* 15 FEB 2017 From the 15 FEB press release of the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Arrests "Investor" for Alleged $154,146 Fraud... Places inmate perpetrating fraud from prison under watch The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on February 9, 2017 arrested one Benjamin Aduli for offences bordering on criminal breach of trust and obtaining by false pretence. Operatives of the EFCC got wind of his nefarious activities through a petition by one of his victims. According to the petitioner, Aduli claimed that he could "help source for a loan facility of $30 million in Dubai" that would be used to finance Fleet farms, a company belonging to the petitioner. Having convinced the potential investor of the "good deal", he demanded for a contributory fee of $154,146 which he claimed would be remitted to ABA investment LLC in Dubai as "a condition for accessing the loan". Not sensing any foul play, the petitioner paid the said sum to a Micro Finance Bank on the instruction of Aduli, for onward remittance as promised. However, since payment was made, no loan was provided for the petitioner, while the money was never returned. The suspect will be charged to court as soon as investigations are elapsed. Meanwhile, the EFCC is currently intensifying investigations into the shady activities of a serial fraudster, Adeolu Adeyanju, who in spite of being behind bars is still defrauding unsuspecting individuals. His fraudulent activities out of the prison yard, came to the fore after a complainant, a friend to a director at the Petroleum Products and Marketing Company, PPMC, petitioned the EFCC that Adeyanju conned him into paying him N9 million. His modus operandi was to clone the telephone number of the director, using same to instruct the petitioner to "make a payment for 50 trucks of petroleum products to Detwinx Global Services Limited", which he did. But on the receipt of the money, Adeyanju found a way to get N7.4 million transferred to a bureau de change operator, who converted same to its dollar equivalent, while keeping N1.5 million in his personal account. The suspect is said to have several aliases with which he uses to defraud people, and at the moment also has cases pending before the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, ICPC, the Department of State Services, DSS, and the Nigeria Police. He would be arraigned as soon as investigations are concluded. Here is the RUL of the press release for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2325-efcc-arrests-investor-for-alleged-154-146-fraud-places-inmate-perpetrating-fraud-from-prison-under-watch ************************************************** 10 FEB 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Arraigns Two Suspected Internet Fraudsters for Forgery The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Friday, February 10, 2017 arraigned the duo of Elijah Jeremiah and Obasa Isaiah before Justice M. A. Adegbola of the High Court of Oyo State sitting in Ibadan, on a 6-count charge bordering on conspiracy to commit forgery and forgery. The accuse persons, however pleaded not guilty to the charges. In view of their plea, counsel to EFCC, Oluwatonyin Owodunni asked f or trial date and prayed the court to remand the defendants in prison custody. However, counsel to the 1st and 2nd defendants, C.C. Amede and Richarmond Natha-Alade informed the court of their application for bail and prayed the court to grant the defendants bail. One of the count reads: "That you, Elijah Jeremiah and Obasa Isaiah sometime between the month of June and October 2016 at Ibadan within the Ibadan Judicial Division with intent to facilitate your procurement of United States' Visa forged an identity card in the name of Elijah Jeremiah and purported same to have been issued to you by Datsol Industries Limited" Elijah and Obasa's journey to the dock followed a petition to the EFCC alleging that Jeremiah lives an ostentatious life without a definite job. He is also alleged to be involved in auction sites on the internet through which he makes online purchases of items from China. His modus operandi is to download Letters of Credit purportedly issued by Scotia Online Financial Services of Scotia Bank worldwide from Google, edits it to suit his purpose of making dubious payments for purchases. The auctioneers, unaware of his antics however often fall victim of his game by shipping the goods to him ahead of confirmation of payment. Obasa, a travel agent became an accomplice by assisting Jeremiah with forged Identity card and letter of introduction to the US embassy. Justice Adegbola while adjourning the matter to February 16, 2017 for ruling on bail application, ordered that the defendants be remanded in prison custody Here is the URL of the press release for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2312-efcc-arraigns-two-suspected-internet-fraudsters-for-forgery ******************************************** 10 FEB 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): Internet Scam: Fraudster Jailed Two years A Federal High Court, sitting in Benin-City, Edo State on Thursday convicted and sentenced to two years imprisonment one Osagie Aghedo Bliss (alias Julbert Stefan, Nesta Gilbert, Isak Krister and Fredrick Cruso) for conspiracy and obtaining by false pretence. Bliss was first arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on 29 January, 2013 on a three- count charge bordering on conspiracy, possession of fraudulent documents containing false pretences and obtaining by false pretence. Bliss, upon his arraignment, pleaded not guilty to the charges After diligent prosecution by the EFCC, Justice P. I. Ajoku found Bliss guilty on count one of the charge and consequently convicted and sentenced him to two years imprisonment without an option of fine. He was discharged and acquitted on count two and three of the charge. Bliss was arrested with nineteen others suspected to be involved in internet fraud at No. 56 Siloko Road, Benin City, Edo State on 19 November, 2012 by the men of Joint Task Force, JTF, 4 Brigade, Nigerian Army following intelligence reports on their suspected involvement in internet scams. Laptop computers and phones were recovered from them at the point of arrest and they were handed over to EFCC, for further investigation and possible prosecution. Meanwhile, the nineteen others arrested with him, have been charged separately. Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2309-internet-scam-fraudster-jailed-two-years 419 Coalition Query: And what amount of monies have been recovered and repatriated to the victims of Mr. Bliss and his fellow 419ers? ************************************** 1 FEB 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Arraigns Two for Defrauding Foreign National in Romance Scam The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Wednesday February 1, 2017 arraigned two suspected internet fraudsters, Chukwudi Ugwueke and Sophia Ugwueke before Justice A.E.Obile of the Federal High Court, Warri, Delta State on a 13-count charge bordering on possession of fraudulent documents and obtaining money by false pretence to the tune of Six Thousand Four Hundred and Thirty US Dollars($6,430.00) in a romance scam. The duo allegedly defrauded their victims by using false identities to lure innocent foreigners into online romantic relationship. One of the counts reads: “that you Chukwudi Emmanuel Ugwueke 'm' (a. K.a) James Scott and Sophia Ugwueke 'f' on or about 9th of February, 2016 at Sapele, Delta State within the jurisdiction of this Honourable court did posses documents containing false representation as James Scott, which said representation you made to L. M. Nors and obtained the sum of $2,600.00 (USD) under false pretence, a pretext you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 1 (1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under section 1 (3) of the said Act. The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charge when it was read to them. Justice Obile granted each of the accused persons bail in the sum of Two Million Naira with two sureties in like sum. The sureties must have landed properties within the jurisdiction of this court, which will be verified by the court. The matter was adjourned to the 7th of March, 2017 for trial, while the accused are to be remanded in prison custody pending the fulfilment of their bail conditions. Here is the URL of the press release for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2297-efcc-arraigns-two-for-defrauding-foreign-national-in-romance-scam ************************************** 23 JAN 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): Suspected Fraudster Docked for $267,000 Love Scam The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC on Monday, 23 January, 2017 arraigned Akintunde Vincent Abiodun before Justice Oluwatoyin Ipaye of Lagos State High court Ikeja on amended charge bordering on forgery and obtaining money by false pretence. The 37-year-old HND holder from Federal Polytechnic Auchi, Edo State, is said to have defrauded the victim, D. Bonnici of $267,000 (Two Hundred and Sixty Seven Thousand New Zealand Dollars by claiming to be Christopher Williams from United Kingdom. According to the complainant, she met Akintunde in a dating site on the internet and allegedly fell in love with him. She said the accused started collecting money from her after he claimed he was in possession of gemstone worth $18,050,000 (Eighteen Million and Fifty Thousand United States Dollars), which he purportedly inherited from his father. She further said, Akintunde hoodwinked her into believing that he was coming to New Zealand to settle down with her. She alleged that the money she sent to the suspect were received in Malaysia and Nigeria by persons bearing Norisha, Jalan Klan, and Mohammed Haizam Bin Fauzin. All of them claimed to be friends of Akintunde. When the 14 charges were read to the defendant, he pleaded not guilty. In view of the plea, the prosecuting counsel, Sesan Ola prayed the court to remand the defendant in prison custody and also for a trial date to be given. Counsel to the defendant, O.P. Daramola however prayed the court to grant the defendant bail. But the prosecution opposed the bail application on the grounds that the defendant had attempted to travel to the United States while on administrative bail and was similarly denied a Canadian visa. Justice Ipaye consequently dismissed the bail application while ordering the defendant be remanded in Kirikiri prison custody. The matter was adjourned to 7 and 8 March, 2017 for trial. Here is the URL of the press release, which includes a photo: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2280-suspected-fraudster-docked-for-267-000-love-scam *************************************** 12 JAN 2017 From the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC): EFCC Arrests Three Suspected Internet Fraudsters The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibadan Zonal Office has apprehended a gang of internet fraudsters comprising the trio of Davies Ayomide Rapheal, Adeyemi Adewumi Segun and Oyewole Segun who allegedly engage in phony online purchases from designated auction sites. The suspects confessed to have accomplices abroad. They were arrested by the operatives of the Commission at different locations following tip-off. Rapheal, the arrow head of the gang, prowls on the internet particularly on Craigslist- an online sale and purchase sites, where items ranging from cars and furniture are being displayed for sale. His words: "I usually pose like a genuine buyer and engage any seller in a bid to purchase a car. After the seller had agreed to the terms of purchase, I go online to edit any PayPal receipt online to reflect whatever agreement reached which includes cost of purchase and the accrued percentage for shipping. Our cohorts abroad, collect the shipping cost which had been added to the cost of the car on the PayPal receipt and send it to either Adeyemi or Oyewole who receives it in Nigeria for us to share." An indigene of Ipetumodu, Osun State, Raphael, 27, said he had to recruit his co-travelers, Adeyemi and Oyewole into the Syndicate in order to raise money to pursue his dream of becoming a music star, having dropped out of school. He confessed to have made about N2.5million from the various scams from which he bought a car, Honda Accord (EOD) with registration number EKY437EA, and a Phantom 5 phone. Adeyemi and Oyewole who hail from Ondo and Ibadan respectively, also confessed to be members of the Syndicate. Aside being part of the auction scam, Adeyemi, 27, stated that he was also into romance scam and had fleeced some unsuspecting victims of their money, the latest being $250 that he got from an Australian. On his part, Oyewole, 31, confessed that he collects their proceeds through his account domiciled in one of the new generation banks. According to him, his share in the latest 'deal' was N247,000 which was ten percent of the sum realised. The suspects will be charged to court as soon as investigation is concluded. Here is the URL of the press release for as long as it is good: https://efccnigeria.org/efcc/news/2264-efcc-arrests-three-suspected-internet-fraudsters *********************************** 1 JAN 2017 419 Coalition would like to open 2017 with yet another plea for justice, recovery, and restitution, in the famous Odiawa case....... According to private reports received by 419 Coalition from trusted sources, the EFCC has still not recovered even $1.00 to repatriate in the famous Odiawa case. Readers will recall that the Odiawa case of over a decade ago was one of the few in which the 419er was convicted in Nigeria and went to prison. Restitution was ordered by the Court at that time. However, the Nigerian Government and the EFCC have been unable to recover and repatriate even $1.00 to the victim as of January 2017. Yes, you heard that right, - over $2 million was stolen by this convicted 419er, and the vaunted EFCC, in over a decade, could not even find $1.00 to recover and repatriate to the victim. Neither 419er money, nor real estate, nor anything of any real value could be found. Nothing.... The main man in charge of the EFCC's recovery and repatriation effort in this case was Mr. Olaolu Adegbite, who headed up the Advance Fee Fraud section of the EFCC from 2003 until March 2012, when he was promoted to Director of Operations of the EFCC. We're not too sure exactly what factors led to Mr. Adegbite's promotion, but his performance in the recovery and restitution phase of the Odiawa case certainly could not have been among them, given that there were no tangible results to show for his efforts in that regard.... In fact, EFCC looked so long in its fruitless search for Odiawa's tainted assets that he finished up his jail sentence awhile back and has gone his merry way. Guess he is living on air or something though, since according to the EFCC he has no assets to seize to pay restitution out of. Let us hope that 2017 will be the victim's lucky year and that the EFCC will see to it that the court ordered restitution actually gets paid. You know, even in the unlikely event that Odiawa actually does have no assets to seize, the EFCC claims to have something like $700 million in unclaimed monies recovered from 419ers sitting in escrow someplace.... at 419 Coalition, we say pay the restitution out of That - after all, it is victims' money, not Nigerian government money. So use it to compensate victims - and those with Court Ordered Restitution should be at the top of the list, our view! *************************************************
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