FBI Nabs 2 Nigerians Over $6.2m Wire Fraud In $25m Deal

Internet Crimes: Nigeria Is 16th Worst Country – FBI
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In a recent bust against fraud, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has detained and charged two Nigerians for a cordinated $6.2million wire fraud after some attempts have been made to scam Americans of $25.2million.

The defendants had also been accused of defrauding and ripping off nearly two dozen public and private entities around the United States, including at least one in Oregon.

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The Department of Justice (DoJ) indictment had also unsealed in federal court charged Efeturi Ariawhorai a.k.a Efeturi Simeon, 35, a citizen of Nigeria and Vanuatu. The other is Ikenna Nwajiaku, 41, believed to be residing in or near Lagos.

The FBI had also declared them as fugitives.

Ariawhorai and Nwajiaku face 11-count bordering on conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, and aggravated identity theft.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Quinn Harrington said federal law enforcement is determined to pursue cyber criminals and retrieve money mistakenly sent to unknown bank accounts. The Cyber and National Security Unit Head at U.S. Attorney’s Office for Oregon said when in doubt, anyone who thinks they are the victim of a cyber crime should report to the FBI.

Special Agent in Charge Kieran L. Ramsey said the level of greed it takes to steal from schools and hospitals, especially during the pandemic, “is beyond disturbing”.

“We were able to recover the total loss of nearly $3million for a victim in Oregon and keep that money out of the hands of criminals”, Ramsey disclosed.

The indictment had been made from June 2019 until January 2021, Ariawhorai and Nwajiaku conspired with others to defraud school districts, universities, colleges, and hospitals. It had also been reported that the duo had contacted some organizations by email, impersonated employees of the targeted companies or professionals and convinced them to send payments to bank accounts controlled by third parties.

Ariawhorai and Nwajiaku attempted to defraud 20 victim organizations out of more than $25million;15 lost a combined $6.2 million as a result of the scheme.

 

Africa Daily News, New York

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