Three men have been arrested by the Police’ Cybercrime unit, INTERPOL National Central Bureau (NCB), Abuja, in relation to the suspected fraudulent online procurement and supply of COVID-19 protective masks, received through the INTERPOL NCB Wiesbaden, Germany.
The suspects, Samson Inegbenesun 30, Blessed Junior 32, and Muhammed Zakari 36, all natives of Uromi in Edo State, were arrested for alleged cybercrime including advance fee fraud, money laundering and romance scam.
According to the police, they belonged to a transnational syndicate that has defrauded their victims hundreds of millions in naira.
A statement on Sunday by spokesman DCP Frank Mba said Inegbenosun, a Turkey-based Nigerian, supplied foreign and local bank accounts to receive fraudulent funds.
He said the accounts were also used as conduits to other feeder accounts, adding that the police recovered a house worth N20million, a Toyota RAV4 2015 model valued at N6.5million and a Toyota Matrix 2002 model worth N2,000,000 which he procured with proceeds of crime.
Junior, Mba said, returned from Italy in February but maintained close dealings with his associates there.
“Investigations revealed that he has made over N120m from internet fraud and other cybercrime dealings. He also received the sum of €52,000 recently from his criminal associates in Italy as commission for his active involvement in an international cybercrime deal. He owns a filling station established with the proceeds of the crime.
“Zakari, an expert in internet fraud, identity theft and impersonation, falsely claimed to be a British citizen. He also posed as one Kelly Galk on online dating apps which he used to carry out romance scams and to defraud unsuspecting members of the public, locally and internationally.
“Investigation revealed he has made millions of naira from his illicit cybercrime transactions since he joined the syndicate. All the suspects will be charged to court on conclusion of investigation and prosecuted in line with the Cybercrime Prevention/Prohibition Act, 2015.”