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SCARS|RSN™ Scam News: 11 Nigerians Indicted In U.S. Federal Court

11 Nigerians Indicted For Stealing Personal Information Of More Than 1,300 Employees Of Jacksonville Company

If convicted of fraud, the penalty is a maximum of 20 years in federal prison

By News4Jax.com Staff

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Nearly a dozen Nigerian citizens accused of sending “phishing” emails to U.S. companies seeking employee identifying information have been indicted on conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

U.S. Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez announced on Friday that 11 foreign nationals targeted multiple U.S. corporations with emails requesting that the companies’ payroll/human resources personnel send Internal Revenue Service W-2 forms containing employee information for review.

They used “spoofed” email addresses, which masked the actual email address, making it appear as if the message was sent from a high-level manager within the victim companies, according to prosecutors.

Badmus Yusuff Abayomi (29), Omo Oba Adekunle Abayomi (30), Yusuf Adesoji Adris (27), Abayomi Habeeb Ojo (25), Olaymei Afolabi Ojo (23), Akanni Fatai Olaiya (28), Seriki Abdulramon Oluwaseun (28), Adetayo Adekunle Oyemade (29), Edgar Ramos Ozil (34), Emmanuel Pius Osebomen (26) and Olaide Fatai Tijani (40), all of Lagos, Nigeria, were all charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud. If convicted, each faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison.

Numerous companies around the United States were victimized by this sophisticated scheme, including a local Jacksonville-based business.

The defendants, once they obtained the tens of thousands of employee W-2 forms, used the information to file false federal income tax returns with the IRS, claiming millions of dollars in fraudulent refunds.

To receive the fraudulent tax refunds generated from the scheme, the defendants used individuals (Money Mules) in the United States to accept the proceeds and send the money to Lagos.

In many instances, the individuals assisting in the United States were victims of a romance scheme (romance scams), whereby the defendants developed online relationships using fake social media platforms.

An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.

While the Nigerians are not yet in U.S. custody, this is a new and important tactic because it allows the U.S. to extradite the Nigerians to the United States to stand trial.

More Information:

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It is essential that law enforcement knows about scams & scammers, even though there is nothing (in most cases) that they can do.

Always report scams involving money lost or where you received money to:

  1. Local Police – ask them to take an “informational” police report – say you need it for your insurance
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This helps your government understand the problem, and allows law enforcement to add scammers on watch lists worldwide.

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SCARS|RSN™ RomanceScamsNow.com™ is the official knowledge and victims' support publication of the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams™ Incorporated [SCARS]™ It is edited and published by the SCARS|RSN Team, a division of SCARS. SCARS is the world's leading anti-scam charitable nonprofit nongovernmental organization, based in Miami Florida U.S.A. Its founder has been involved in combating online fraud since 1991. SCARS™ - the Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. is a charitable nonprofit nongovernmental organization (NGO) dedicated to advocating victim's causes and changing government and law enforcement attitudes toward online fraud for good! Please join us in becoming a member of SCARS - it's free! Add your voice so that the world will listen at last - just go to www.AgainstScams.org. The SCARS|RSN website and all of our publications (including social media) are maintained by our own staff employees and volunteers to provide you the most up to date information about scams & scammers from around the world. We show you how to avoid them or recover from them. SCARS is the only registered online crime victims' assistance & support organization in the world. Be sure to report scammers here. Also, visit our main Facebook page for more information about romance scams.