THE Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu, on Friday stated the company has arrested over 200 web fraudsters and recovered $14 million wire transfers syndicate.
He additionally stated the latest Operation Rewired, a joint operation by EFCC and the FBI, led to the seizure of $2.four million.
He stated among the Nigerians talked about within the notorious FBI record of cyber fraudsters have been tracked, arrested and are being prosecuted in courts throughout the nation.
He, nevertheless, dominated out creating government cell for high-profile financial and monetary crime suspects.
Magu, who made the disclosures at a briefing in Abuja, stated fraudsters accounted for an enormous share of the 890 convictions that has been recorded by the Commission
He stated: ”As a lot of you’ll recall, the EFCC was created due largely to the unfavorable impact of the actions of fraudsters, particularly advance price fraudsters, on the economic system and picture of our Nigeria.
“While the Commission was profitable in tackling advance price fraud, different types of fraudulent actions have emerged, promoted by advances in telecommunications, with even better influence on the economic system and picture of Nigeria.
“Many youths are concerned in Internet fraud of various sorts, most frequently concentrating on foreigners, particularly ladies, whom they defraud of huge sums of cash.
”The EFCC has been unrelenting in its effort to test the actions of those fraudsters, who, I have to say, symbolize a tiny fraction of the inhabitants of our nation.
”Following the complaints from some overseas international locations, the Commission has needed to undertake particular collaboration with different legislation enforcement organisations, to test these crimes.
“Recently, the Commission and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation, FBI concluded a joint operations code named, Operation Rewired.
“The train was meant to dismantle the community of organised legal gang that makes a speciality of enterprise e-mail compromise schemes, designed to intercept and hijack wire transfers from companies and people.
“The operation resulted in the seizure of nearly $2.4 million, and the disruption and recovery of approximately $14 million in fraudulent wire transfers.”
Magu gave an perception into different actions of the fee and collaborations with some overseas companies.
He added: “Also worthy of point out is the Operation Triangle, which noticed Italian police and EFCC working carefully to dismantle a trans-national legal group working in all of the 5 continents.
“EFCC in shut cooperation with the Italian National Police in addition to Spanish, Polish, English, Belgian, Georgian, Turkish and Cameroonian police, with the assist of Europol and Interpol, and the coordination of Eurojust, carried out in depth investigations which resulted within the arrest of 62 people, seizure of 40 thousand euros, 30 good telephones, 10 tablets and 15 private computer systems.
“ Some of the Nigerians talked about within the notorious FBI record of cyber fraudsters have been tracked, arrested and are being prosecuted in courts throughout the nation by the Commission.
”But extra elementary than these worldwide collaborations is the sustained effort of the Commission to comprehensively sort out the menace of Internet associated frauds in Nigeria. I’m pleased to report that we’re recording collection of breakthroughs with virtually every day arrests of suspected fraudsters throughout the nation
”In October alone, the Commission recorded over 200 arrests of suspected Internet fraud suspects in rigorously coordinated operations throughout our places of work.”
On the arrest of an web fraudster, Ismaila Mustapha a.okay.a. Mompha, Magu stated 5 wristwatches valued at over N60 million have been recovered from him.
He stated: “However the main speaking level for us was the latest arrest of celebrated social media character and alleged web fraudster, Ismaila Mustapha, also referred to as Mompha, and his Lebanese confederate, Hamza Koudeih.
“They have been picked up in Abuja and Lagos respectively by credible intelligence which flagged the suspects as kingpins of Organized Cyber Syndicate Network, OCSN.
“Five wristwatches valued at over N60 million have been recovered from Mompha on the level of arrest. Investigation has additionally revealed that he operates 51 financial institution accounts in Nigeria with which he acquired properties in Dubai and had laundered about N14 billion by Ismalob Global Investments Limited.
“His confederate, Koudeih, additionally has two corporations, particularly: THK Services Limited and CHK properties Limited with which he has allegedly laundered about N19 billion Koudeih lives in a $5 million every year suite on the Eko Atlantic Pearl Tower, Victoria Island Lagos. “
“These arrests have additional confirmed our dedication to the battle towards corruption and financial crime and ship a transparent message to excessive finish fraudsters that they’ll solely run however can not disguise. Sooner than later, we’ll get them.
“The effort to flush out all fraudsters continues. At the identical time, we’ll maintain the tempo of vigorous prosecution of fraud circumstances in court docket.
“Indeed, fraudsters account for an enormous p.c of the 890 convictions that has been recorded by the Commission this 12 months. A variety of belongings have been seized whereas victims have additionally loved restitution by order of court docket.
“But the battle is way from being gained. The Commission requires the assist of all stakeholders, particularly the media, to assist in sensitising the youth who’re those largely concerned in cybercrime, concerning the evil of Internet frauds on our economic system and collective nationwide picture.
”The youth should study the virtues of integrity and laborious work as the trail to sustainable wealth. They should realise that crime doesn’t pay. Rather it’s going to destroy their prospects and damage their possibilities of first rate dwelling.
“For those that are remorseful, and ready to show a brand new leaf, the Commission is absolutely disposed to assist in channeling their energies and cyber abilities to optimistic enterprise. We are contemplating a coverage that can assist in the rehabilitation of convicted however repentant Internet fraudsters, to make sure that their abilities are positively utilized in serving to to construct a greater Nigerian society.
”I urge you all to hitch us in combating cybercrime and different types of corruption. We want to alter the unfavorable narratives about Nigeria being a haven of fraudsters.”
Responding to a query on an alleged petition towards the chief of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Magu stated: “You want me to talk about a petition here? Next question please.”