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FBI, South Africa Police Arrest Eight Nigerian Black Axe Cult Members For Internet Fraud, Money Laundering |The Republican News

Seven leaders of the Cape Town zone of the Neo Black Movement of Africa, also known as “Black Axe,” and an eighth man who conspired with a Black Axe leader, were charged with multiple federal crimes relating to Internet scams they perpetrated from South Africa, Acting U.S. Attorney, Rachael A. Honig, has announced.

Seven leaders of the Cape Town zone of the Neo Black Movement of Africa, also known as “Black Axe,” and an eighth man who conspired with a Black Axe leader, were charged with multiple federal crimes relating to Internet scams they perpetrated from South Africa, Acting U.S. Attorney, Rachael A. Honig, has announced.

According to the US Department of Justice, Perry Osagiede, aka “Lord Sutan Abubakar de 1st,” aka “Rob Nicolella,” aka “Alan Salomon,” 52; Enorense Izevbigie, aka “Richy Izevbigie,” aka “Lord Samuel S Nujoma,” 45; Franklyn Edosa Osagiede, aka, “Lord Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela,” aka, “Edosa Franklyn Osagiede,” aka “Dave Hewitt,” aka, “Bruce Dupont,” 37; Osariemen Eric Clement, aka, “Lord Adekunle Ajasi,” aka, “Aiden Wilson,” 35; Collins Owhofasa Otughwor, aka, “Lord Jesse Makoko,” aka, “Philip Coughlan,” 37; and Musa Mudashiru, aka “Lord Oba Akenzua,” 33; all originally from Nigeria, are charged by superseding indictment with wire fraud conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy, spanning 2011 to 2021. One defendant remains at large.

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Perry Osagiede, Franklyn Osagiede, Clement, and Izevbigie were also charged with wire fraud. Perry Osagiede, Franklyn Osagiede, and Otughwor were charged with aggravated identity theft.

Toritseju Gabriel Otubu, aka “Andy Richards,” aka “Ann Petersen,” 41, also originally from Nigeria, is charged by separate indictment with wire fraud conspiracy, wire fraud, aggravated identity theft, and money laundering conspiracy, spanning 2016 to 2021.

“Americans are too often victimized by criminal organizations located abroad who use the Internet to deceive those victims, defraud them of money, and, many times, persuade the victims to wittingly or unwittingly assist in perpetuating the fraudulent schemes,” Acting U.S. Attorney Honig said.

“The public should be on guard against schemes like these. And, more importantly, anyone thinking of engaging in this kind of criminal conduct should understand that the U.S. Attorney’s Office and our partners will find them and bring them to justice, no matter where they are.”

Secret Service Office of Investigations, Assistant Director Jeremy Sheridan, added, “Transnational organized criminal networks continue to victimize U.S. citizens and threaten the financial infrastructure of the United States.

“The Secret Service, alongside our partner agencies, work tirelessly in its global investigative mission to dismantle these groups and arrest those who lead them. We are proud to be a part of the international law enforcement mission to combat all forms of financial crimes and thank all those involved in this investigation. The U.S. Secret Service extends its gratitude to the U.S. Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service for its assistance.

“Foreign nationals who think they can hide in another country or cyberspace while preying on our citizens need to know one thing.

“The FBI has a global footprint and will use every resource available to protect the American people. The strong working relationship among our federal and international law enforcement partners allows us to reach across geographical boundaries. In other words, anyone who thinks they can avoid American justice simply by operating outside the United States should rethink their strategy.”

According to documents filed in these cases: Perry Osagiede, Izevbigie, Franklyn Osagiede, Clement, Otughwor, and Mudashiru (the “Black Axe defendants”) were all leaders of the Neo Black Movement of Africa, also known as “Black Axe,” an organization headquartered in Benin City, Nigeria that operates in various countries.

The Black Axe is organized into regional chapters known as “zones,” and the defendants were all leaders within the Cape Town, South Africa, Zone. Perry Osagiede founded the Cape Town Zone of Black Axe and worked as its zonal head, along with Izevbigie. The Black Axe defendants and other members of Black Axe took part in, and openly discussed, fraud schemes amongst their membership. 

From at least 2011 through 2021, the Black Axe defendants and other conspirators worked together from Cape Town to engage in widespread internet fraud involving romance scams and advance-fee schemes. Many of these fraudulent narratives involved claims that an individual was traveling to South Africa for work and needed money or other items of value following a series of unfortunate and unforeseen events, often involving a construction site or problems with a crane.

The conspirators used social media websites, online dating websites, and voice-over-internet protocol phone numbers to find and talk with victims in the United States while using many aliases. 

The conspirators’ romance scam victims believed they were in romantic relationships with the person using the alias and when requested, the victims sent money and items of value overseas, including to South Africa. Sometimes, when victims expressed hesitation in sending money, the conspirators used manipulative tactics to coerce the payments, including by threatening to distribute personally sensitive photographs of the victim.

The conspirators used the bank accounts of victims and individuals with U.S.-based financial accounts to transfer the money to South Africa. On certain occasions, the conspirators convinced victims to open financial accounts in the United States that the conspirators would then be permitted to use themselves. In addition to laundering money derived from romance scams and advance-fee schemes, the conspirators also worked to launder money from business email compromise schemes. In addition to their aliases, the conspirators used business entities to conceal and disguise the illegal nature of the funds.

Otubu also engaged in romance scams and used the victims of those scams to obtain money and to launder the proceeds of business email compromises back to South Africa. Otubu conspired with an individual identified in the criminal complaint as Co-conspirator 1, who was a founding member and leader of the Cape Town Zone of Black Axe. 

The wire fraud conspiracy and wire fraud charges each carry a maximum term of 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000. The money laundering conspiracy charge carries a maximum term of 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $500,000 or twice the value of the property involved in the transaction, whichever is greatest. The aggravated identity theft charges carry a mandatory term of two years in prison, which must run consecutively to any other term of imprisonment imposed on a defendant.       

Seven defendants were arrested in South Africa yesterday by the South African Police Service. Those defendants had their initial appearances in South Africa and are awaiting extradition to the United States on these charges. Both cases are before U.S. District Judge Michael A. Shipp in Trenton federal court. (Sahara Reporters)

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Hushpuppi Narrates How He Paid DCP Abba Kyari To Jail Disloyal Fraud Gang Member |The Republican News

Hushpuppi and DCP Abba Kyari

A report on the ongoing investigations into the crimes of Mr. Ramon Olorunwa Abbas, also known as Hushpuppi, by the FBI released by the Department of Justice, in California, USA has linked Nigeria’s super cop DCP Abba Kyari to the activities of international fraudsters.

The report, which claims that ‘Hushpuppi’ had admitted to committing money laundering in a school financing scam and a additional cyber and business email compromise schemes, links DCP Abba Kyari to the activities of 4 other Nigerian in the execution of an international scheme to defraud a Qatari school founder of over $1 Million.

US Court Orders FBI To Arrest DCP Abba Kyari Over Ties With Hushpuppi |The Republican News

The report accused DCP Kyari of collecting monies from Hushpuppi to arrest one Kelly Chibuzo Vincent, an accomplice of Hushpuppi, in Nigeria after he (Vincent) betrayed Hushpuppi and informed a victim that he was being scammed after having a dispute with his gang.

“Court documents outline a dispute among members of the conspiracy, which allegedly prompted Vincent to contact the victim and claim that Abbas and Juma were engaged in fraud. After this contact, Abbas allegedly arranged to have Vincent jailed in Nigeria by Abba Alhaji Kyari, 46, of Nigeria.” The report said.

Hushpuppi Pleads Guilty To Money Laundering, Risks Maximum Jail Term Of 20 yrs |The Republican News

The report further described Abba Kyari as “a highly decorated deputy commissioner of the Nigeria Police Force who is alleged to have arranged for Vincent to be arrested and jailed at Abbas’ behest, and then sent Abbas photographs of Vincent after his arrest. Kyari also allegedly sent Abbas bank account details for an account into which Abbas could deposit payment for Vincent’s arrest and imprisonment.”

Hushpuppi a Nigerian Instagram influencer who attracted over 2.4 million followers with pictures of a glamorous jet-setting lifestyle was arrested by Dubai police, in June, 2020, amid claims of a £350m cyberscam scheme.

Hushpuppi is currently facing criminal charges in the United States of conspiracy to launder money obtained from business email compromise frauds and other scams, including schemes that defrauded a U.S. law firm of about $40M.

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Yahoo Boys: Oyo Has Highest Number Of Internet, Cyber Crimes In SouthWest – EFCC

Nabbed cybercrime victims known locally as Yahoo Boys

THE Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Monday, revealed that Oyo State has the highest number of cybercrimes and corruption related cases out of the six states in the South West.

This was disclosed by the Zonal Head of the commission, Mr. Friday Ebelo when speaking with newsmen in Ibadan, Oyo State.
The statistics, he noted, was based on the last six months since the baton of leadership changed in the zone.

Most of the suspects, who perpetrate cybercrimes and other fraudulent acts, he noted, are between the ages of 18 and 40.

Ebelo said: “If you are looking for the number of convictions, Oyo State should be seen as the highest. We are based in Ibadan and since I resumed here, the tempo of our activities has increased.

“These suspects of cybercrimes and fraud related cases operate from Lagos and share their loots in Ibadan. But now, most of them are leaving Ibadan for the adjoining states.”

While giving a further breakdown of the statistics, the EFCC official said: “This year, the zone received a total of 481 petitions. We were able to secure 83 convictions out of the 107 cases filed at different courts within the zone. That represents 83 per cent of the total number of cases filed.”

“From January to June 21, 2019, an aggregate sum of N116.9 million has been recovered. Others, which are in foreign currencies, include $39,129, £1,800 and £50,” he said.

He added that 65 vehicles were recovered from the suspects.
Ebelo explained that in some cases, criminals, who act as agents of the commission, use its name to seal up properties saying this is a scam as the commission does not work with any agents.
He appealed to parents to be more vigilant and pay constant visits to their wards in schools. (Vanguard)

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EFCC Arrest 37 “Yahoo Boys” Online Fraudsters In Imo State, 25 Exotic Cars Seized

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The South-east Zonal Office of EFCC, on Wednesday, May 1, 2019, arrested 37 suspected internet fraudsters in Owerri, Imo State. The arrest followed a raid on some targeted residences in Okwu Urata, Aladinma and Egbu areas.

The Commission’s action followed intelligence report which pointed that the suspects were living lavish lifestyles without any known means of livelihood, alleging further that they specialize in defrauding unsuspecting victims, through the internet.

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In the course of executing the search warrants, items which included laptop computers, 25 five exotic cars, which include several brands of Mercedez-Benz, Lexus,Toyota and expensive mobile phones, were recovered.

Speaking on the development, the Zonal Head, Usman Imam, who said the exercise was in line with the Commission’s mandate decried the high rate of cybercrime in the zone which he blamed on the erosion and breakdown of country’s values.

“It is true that no society has been able to totally eradicate crime, but we are ready at least to reduce it to the barest minimum and it appears that this cybercrime is one of the challenges of our time, which the EFCC is willing to face drastically,” Imam said.

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Questioning the lifestyle of the suspects, Iman said; “What is the business of a university student, a new graduate or youth corper looking for money to buy a car of N10 million? Obviously, this is rushing life and a collapse of our positive value system where people rarely want to start from a humble beginning,” Imam added.

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Usman lamented that if nothing was done, the country’s leadership could be jeopardized as many youths involved in cybercrimes are expected to take up leadership positions in the future.

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The suspects who volunteered their statements under caution will be charged to court as soon investigations into the matter are concluded.

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