1:32 am - Saturday July 20, 2019

20 YEARS IN PRISON MAXIMUM CHARGE: AMERICA’S Justice Department Arrests KWAM 1’s Son, SULTAN OMOGBADEBO ANIFOWOSHE in Chicago, Others over $2million Fake Online Romance, Mystery Shopping Scam…’My Son is not a Fraudster, He’s now on Bail’, reacts Nigeria’s Legendary King of Fuji Music *Law Enforcement Agents round up internet fraudsters in USA, Nigeria * FBI argues Fraud lasted over two years through ‘Operation Gold Phish’ * Complaint accuses the conspirators of engaging in various other cyber-enabled scams, including investment, employment frauds and target victims’ corporate email accounts *Used parts of slush fund to pay for vehicles on behalf of a Nigerian car company *Deceived American ladies through Match.com, Facebook, and Instagram *Apprehended in Illinois: DANIEL SAMUEL ETA, also known as “Captain” and “Etaoko,” 35, of Skokie; BABATUNDE LADEHINDE LABIYI, also known as “Junior,” 20, of Chicago; BARNABAS OGHENERUKEVWE EDJIEH, 29, of Chicago; SULTAN OMOGBADEBO ANIFOWOSHE, also known as “Ayinde,” 26, of Chicago; BABATUNDE IBRAHEEM AKARIGIDI, also known as “AK,” 39, of Chicago; MIRACLE AYOKUNLE OKUNOLA, 21, of Chicago; and OLUROTIMI AKITUNDE IDOWU, also known as “Idol,” 55, of Chicago *Picked up in Texas: ADEWALE ANTHONY ADEWUMI, 27, of Richardson, Texas. Arrested in Nigeria was OLANIYI ADELEYE OGUNGBAIYE, also known as “DonChiChi,” 26, of Lagos, Nigeria BY GEORGE ELIJAH OTUMU/AMERICAN FOREIGN BUREAU CHIEF, TOM CRAIG/ENTERTAINMENT WRITER, CHICAGO & LOLA OGUNBANWO/CRIME REPORTER, ABUJA

20 YEARS IN PRISON MAXIMUM CHARGE:

AMERICA’S Justice Department Arrests KWAM 1’s Son, SULTAN OMOGBADEBO ANIFOWOSHE in Chicago, Others over $2million Fake Online Romance, Mystery Shopping Scam…’My Son is not a Fraudster, He’s now on Bail’, reacts Nigeria’s Legendary King of Fuji Music

*Law Enforcement Agents round up internet fraudsters in USA, Nigeria

* FBI argues Fraud lasted over two years through ‘Operation Gold Phish’

* Complaint accuses the conspirators of engaging in various other cyber-enabled scams, including investment, employment frauds and target victims’ corporate email accounts

*Used parts of slush fund to pay for vehicles on behalf of a Nigerian car company

*Deceived American ladies through Match.com, Facebook, and Instagram

*Apprehended in Illinois: DANIEL SAMUEL ETA, also known as “Captain” and “Etaoko,” 35, of Skokie; BABATUNDE LADEHINDE LABIYI, also known as “Junior,” 20, of Chicago; BARNABAS OGHENERUKEVWE EDJIEH, 29, of Chicago; SULTAN OMOGBADEBO ANIFOWOSHE, also known as “Ayinde,” 26, of Chicago; BABATUNDE IBRAHEEM AKARIGIDI, also known as “AK,” 39, of Chicago; MIRACLE AYOKUNLE OKUNOLA, 21, of Chicago; and OLUROTIMI AKITUNDE IDOWU, also known as “Idol,” 55, of Chicago

*Picked up in Texas: ADEWALE ANTHONY ADEWUMI, 27, of Richardson, Texas. Arrested in Nigeria was OLANIYI ADELEYE OGUNGBAIYE, also known as “DonChiChi,” 26, of Lagos, Nigeria

BY GEORGE ELIJAH OTUMU/AMERICAN FOREIGN BUREAU CHIEF, TOM CRAIG/ENTERTAINMENT WRITER, CHICAGO & LOLA OGUNBANWO/CRIME REPORTER, ABUJA

LIKE A BOLD FROM THE BLUES, SULTAN OMOGBADEBO ANIFOWOSHE, known as ‘Ayinde’ in the city of Illinois, son of Nigeria’s King of Fuji Music, King Wasiu Ayinde Marshal, KWAM 1 had been arrested for alleged involvement in a fake Online Romance and Mystery Shopping Scam to the tune of $2million in Chicago by United States Justice Department. Eight other Nigerians believed by prosecutors and officials of Federal Bureau of Investigation, FBI, to be involved in these con games had been rounded up in other parts of Chicago, Texas and Nigeria through the effort of Nigeria’s anti-graft agency, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

In a Press Statement issued by United States Justice Department, Northern District of Illinois on December 19, 2018 and made available to our correspondents, it revealed that Anifowoshe, eight other Nigerians were involved in international “romance scams” and “mystery shopper” schemes that made victims lose at least $2 million over the last two years. Law enforcement identified internet-enabled fraud schemes carried out by alleged conspirators in the US and Nigeria through the Chicago-based investigation, ‘Operation Gold Phish’.

The statement read: “During the Chicago-based investigation, dubbed “Operation Gold Phish,” law enforcement identified a variety of cyber-enabled fraud schemes allegedly carried out by conspirators in the U.S. and Nigeria. One of the alleged schemes involved ‘romance scams,’ in which a conspirator builds trust with a victim through a purported online romance before convincing the victim to send money to a predetermined recipient.

Arrested on the U.S. charges in Illinois were DANIEL SAMUEL ETA, also known as ‘Captain’ and ‘Etaoko,’ 35, of Skokie; BABATUNDE LADEHINDE LABIYI, also known as “Junior,” 20, of Chicago; BARNABAS OGHENERUKEVWE EDJIEH, 29, of Chicago; SULTAN OMOGBADEBO ANIFOWOSHE, also known as “Ayinde,” 26, of Chicago; BABATUNDE IBRAHEEM AKARIGIDI, also known as “AK,” 39, of Chicago; MIRACLE AYOKUNLE OKUNOLA, 21, of Chicago; and OLUROTIMI AKITUNDE IDOWU, also known as “Idol,” 55, of Chicago.”

For those picked up in Texas, “Arrested in Texas was ADEWALE ANTHONY ADEWUMI, 27, of Richardson, Texas. Arrested in Nigeria was OLANIYI ADELEYE OGUNGBAIYE, also known as “DonChiChi,” 26, of Lagos, Nigeria.

In addition to the romance and mystery shopper schemes, the complaint accuses the conspirators of engaging in various other cyber-enabled scams, including investment and employment frauds. The conspirators also defrauded victims by targeting corporate email accounts, the complaint states. In the email scam, known as a business email compromise, the conspirators fraudulently obtained usernames and passwords or sent “spoofing” email messages that claimed to be from a company employee, instructing the victim to change the wire instructions for bank payments. Per the instructions given in the fraudulent emails, the victims unknowingly wired funds to bank accounts controlled by the conspirators that had been opened in fictitious names utilizing fake passports, the complaint states.”

On how the gang operates: “The victim received a check through the U.S. mail with instructions to deposit it in a personal bank account, withdraw the money in cash, and wire it to a third party. The check turned out to be fake, and the victims were defrauded of the wired money, the charges allege.

A criminal complaint filed Dec. 4, 2018, in U.S. District Court in Chicago charged nine defendants with conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Arrests were recently carried out in Illinois, Texas, and Nigeria, and all of the defendants are now in law enforcement custody. The Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is conducting a related investigation of other individuals in Nigeria.

The U.S. charges were announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Jeffrey S. Sallet, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Craig Goldberg, Inspector-in-Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service in Chicago. Valuable assistance was provided by the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Peter S. Salib and Charles W. Mulaney represent the government.”

In a rebuttal statement to absolve KWAM 1’s son, Image maker and media consultant to the legendary Fuji music icon, Kunle Rasheed explained the innocence of Sultan, as it reads: “Sultan Marshal’s Arrest: The True Story. Our attention has been drawn to the news circulating that Sultan, K1 De Ultimate’s son was arrested alongside five other people in the US over Two million Dollars fraud. There is no doubt that he was among those that were arrested but what is however not true is that he is a fraudster. We can confidently say that he was not in any way involved in the crime, which explains the reason why he was the only person that was released on bail. The bail given to Sultan indicates that he is not involved in the crime; he is only a victim of circumstance who happened to be at a wrong place at a wrong time. Many detractors are quick to celebrate the news because to them, they want to get to the father. But the truth will always shine as light over darkness. Sultan, we believe will be given a clean bill of health.”

As at time of going to the press, it was gathered that bail has already been given to Anifowoshe.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

9 Defendants Charged in Chicago in International Investigation Targeting “Romance Scams” and “Mystery Shopper” Schemes

CHICAGO — Seven Chicago-area residents are among nine individuals arrested in the United States and Nigeria as part of an international investigation into online “romance scams” and “mystery shopper” schemes.

During the Chicago-based investigation, dubbed “Operation Gold Phish,” law enforcement identified a variety of cyber-enabled fraud schemes allegedly carried out by conspirators in the U.S. and Nigeria. One of the alleged schemes involved “romance scams,” in which a conspirator builds trust with a victim through a purported online romance before convincing the victim to send money to a predetermined recipient.

The conspirators initially contacted victims online via applications and websites, including Match.com, Facebook, and Instagram, the complaint states. Another alleged cyber-enabled fraud involved a “mystery shopper” scheme, in which conspirators fraudulently offered victims opportunities to work as a mystery shopper and receive commissions for evaluating retailers.

The victim received a check through the U.S. mail with instructions to deposit it in a personal bank account, withdraw the money in cash, and wire it to a third party. The check turned out to be fake, and the victims were defrauded of the wired money, the charges allege.

A criminal complaint filed Dec. 4, 2018, in U.S. District Court in Chicago charged nine defendants with conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Arrests were recently carried out in Illinois, Texas, and Nigeria, and all of the defendants are now in law enforcement custody. The Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is conducting a related investigation of other individuals in Nigeria.

The U.S. charges were announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Jeffrey S. Sallet, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Craig Goldberg, Inspector-in-Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service in Chicago. Valuable assistance was provided by the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Peter S. Salib and Charles W. Mulaney represent the government.

Arrested on the U.S. charges in Illinois were DANIEL SAMUEL ETA, also known as “Captain” and “Etaoko,” 35, of Skokie; BABATUNDE LADEHINDE LABIYI, also known as “Junior,” 20, of Chicago; BARNABAS OGHENERUKEVWE EDJIEH, 29, of Chicago; SULTAN OMOGBADEBO ANIFOWOSHE, also known as “Ayinde,” 26, of Chicago; BABATUNDE IBRAHEEM AKARIGIDI, also known as “AK,” 39, of Chicago; MIRACLE AYOKUNLE OKUNOLA, 21, of Chicago; and OLUROTIMI AKITUNDE IDOWU, also known as “Idol,” 55, of Chicago.

Arrested in Texas was ADEWALE ANTHONY ADEWUMI, 27, of Richardson, Texas. Arrested in Nigeria was OLANIYI ADELEYE OGUNGBAIYE, also known as “DonChiChi,” 26, of Lagos, Nigeria.

In addition to the romance and mystery shopper schemes, the complaint accuses the conspirators of engaging in various other cyber-enabled scams, including investment and employment frauds.

The conspirators also defrauded victims by targeting corporate email accounts, the complaint states. In the email scam, known as a business email compromise, the conspirators fraudulently obtained usernames and passwords or sent “spoofing” email messages that claimed to be from a company employee, instructing the victim to change the wire instructions for bank payments. Per the instructions given in the fraudulent emails, the victims unknowingly wired funds to bank accounts controlled by the conspirators that had been opened in fictitious names utilizing fake passports, the complaint states.

The charge in the complaint carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. If convicted, the Court must impose reasonable sentences under federal sentencing statutes and the advisory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines. The public is reminded that charges contain only accusations and are not evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

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