FBI Scam List: Inside the stupendous lifestyles of 77 indicted Nigerians in U.S. [Videos]
…Nigerians should not be judged by sins of indicted few – FG
Videos have emerged online of the lavish lifestyles of some young Nigerians recently indicted and arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) over alleged conspiracy to steal millions of dollars through fraud schemes and launder the money through a Los Angeles-based network.
In the video sourced exclusively by TNG, the (now) arrested Nigerians were seen partying and spraying several thousands of dollars on themselves.
Recall that the U.S. authorities on Thursday unsealed a 252-count grand jury indictment charging 80 people, about 77 of them Nigerians.
The conspiracy included frauds involving business email (BEC scams), romance scams and schemes targeting elderly people.
Victims were targeted in the U.S. and around the world, and some lost hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Fourteen defendants were arrested, mostly in the Los Angeles region. FBI agents could be seen processing suspects in a downtown Los Angeles parking lot.
Six other defendants are believed to be fugitives in the U.S. and the others are abroad, mostly in Nigeria. Authorities said they hope to extradite them.
The investigation began in 2016 with one victim and a single bank account, said Paul Delacourt, assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles office.
Among the people arrested are: Valentine Iro, 31, of Carson, and Chukwudi Christogunus Igbokwe, 38, of Gardena, both Nigerian citizens. Others are: Jerry Ikogho, 50, of Carson (who was taken into custody on Sunday), and Adegoke Moses Ogungbe, 34, of Fontana, who were indicted as illicit money exchangers for the conspiracy.
In addition: Iro, Igbokwe, Ikogho, Ogungbe and three other defendants –Izuchukwu Kingsley Umejesi, 30, of Los Angeles, Tityaye Marina Mansbangura, 33, of Palmdale, and Obi Madekwe, 31, of Nigeria – are charged with operating illegal money transmitting businesses. Ogungbe and Mansbangura were also among those arrested this morning, and Umejesi is a fugitive currently being sought by authorities.
According to the FBI statement: Iro, Igbokwe and Chuks Eroha, 39, face additional charges for attempting to destroy their phones when the FBI executed a search warrant in July 2017. Iro also is charged with lying to the FBI in an interview conducted during the search. The complaint alleges that, when the FBI arrived to conduct the court-authorized search at Iro’s apartment in Carson, Iro broke his phone in half, while Igbokwe and Eroha threw phones from a bedroom window of the apartment. While Iro claimed he previously had broken the phone during an argument with his wife, the complaint details how the FBI was able to determine that the phone was operational until seconds after the FBI knocked on Iro’s apartment door to execute the search warrant. Eroha is believed to have fled to Nigeria shortly after the FBI executed the warrant.
Early in August, the FBI similarly arrested a Nigerian FORBES celebrated billionaire, who was accused of milking a branch of US owned Caterpillar subsidiary in the UK of $11.5m, among other atrocious frauds committed.
Nigerians should not be judged by sins of indicted few – FG
Meanwhile the Nigerian government has warned the United States authorities not to judge millions of other law abiding Nigerians with the misdeeds of a few involved in the alleged fraud.
Chairman/CEO of Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, Mrs. Abike Dabiri-Erewa while reacting to the develioment on Friday said Nigeria is not a nation of fraudulent. She also urged home-based Nigerians indicted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation to voluntarily turn themselves in.
She warned that if the suspects refuse to do so, the Federal Government might have no option than to repatriate them to the United States to face the charges preferred against them.
Dabiri urged the Federal Government to repatriate those of them that are home-based if they refuse to voluntarily turn themselves in.
In a statement released on Friday NIDCOM chairman said the actions of “a few Nigerians involved in criminal activities do not reflect the disposition of the majority of the citizens.”
Dabiri also urged the Nigerians charged with fraud in the U.S. to turn themselves in to the U.S. authorities.
She expressed the commission’s deep concerns about the news of the indictment.
She said that prior to the court indictment of the 80 suspects of which one Valentine Iro and one Chukwudi Igbokwe were lead suspects, one Obinwanne Okeke, aka Invictus Obi, had earlier been arrested in Virginia.
“We acknowledge the fact that accusation does not mean guilt, and we hope that all the accused will be given fair and speedy trial.
“We also ask those accused in Nigeria to voluntarily turn themselves in to American authorities to clear their names without which the Nigerian government should extradite them if relevant international treaties between the two governments are invoked,” she said.
“We advise and continuously resist any stereotype of Nigerians generally.
“The commission will continue to monitor the case closely,” Dabiri-Erewa added.