Photo: Collage: MetrowatchOnline

EFCC arrests 31 Internet fraud suspects, seeks CBN’s support in tackling investment scams

*Economic and Financial Crimes Commission urges the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to assist the anti-graft agency with more information and other logistical support in tackling fraudulent investment managers operating in the country

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Activating its actionable intelligence to protect Nigerian consumers, the operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) have arrested 31 suspected Internet fraudsters.

ConsumerConnect gathered the West African country’s operatives apprehended Internet scam suspects Sunday, September 12, in two separate locations in Benin City, Edo State capital, following due intelligence.

Some of the suspected fraudsters were said to have been spotted in a viral video a few weeks ago, standing on top of their cars and throwing bundles of Naira notes into the air at a popular Plaza in Benin City, Channels TV report said.

The suspects reportedly had embarked on a similar mission at the same venue Sunday before they were intercepted by operatives of the anti-graft Commission at the exit gate.

Whereas other suspects were arrested at their hideout in Benin City, report stated.

Among other suspects the EFCC operatives arrested are Essien Sunday, Joseph Nwosu, Samuel Victor, Abdurahman Abudulahi, Uwaifo Destiny, Osaro Osarere, Favour Oleye, Smart Okunvobo, Oduwa Osahon, Osaretin Blessed, Frank Osas, Aisosa Kelly, Richard Ehigie, Destiny Omoru, Jacob Kelvin, Aker Kelly, Promise Godspower, Lucky Dickson and Osamode Efosa.

Others are Osamuyi Aigbe-Egharevba, Ohumumwen Osaremen, Christopher Momodu, Aigbe Destiny, Eti-osa Osamwonyi, Patrick Benson Osaguna, Victor Kenyei, Marvellous Atiti, Gift Ebuehi, Osayi Casmir, Osahenkhoe Godstime and Paul Okoh.

Items recovered from the suspects at the point of arrest include 13 exotic cars, including Lexus ES 350, Lexus 350, Lexus RX 350, Lexus ES 350, Lexus RX 350, Lexus RX 350, Lexus IS 350, Toyota Venza, Mercedes C300, Mercedes ML350, Range Rover Evoque, GLK 350 4Matic and a Toyota Camry.

Report noted the other items recovered from the suspected Net fraudsters include laptops, phones, documents and identity cards.

Meanwhile, Commission has disclosed the suspects would be arraigned as soon as investigations are completed.

Commission seeks CBN’s support in tackling fraudulent investment firms

In a related development, ACE Aliyu Naibi,  Port Harcourt  Zonal Commander of EFCC,  has urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) assist the anti-graft agency with more  information and other support in tackling fraudulent investment managers operating, especially in the Niger Delta region of the country.

ACE Naibi was said to have made the call Tuesday, September 14, 2021, in Port Harcourt, Rivers State capital, while receiving Mrs. Oruwari O.B., Rivers State Branch Controller of CBN, who paid him a courtesy visit.

ACE Aliyu Naibi,  Port Harcourt  Zonal Commander of EFCC (left) and Mrs. Oruwari O.B., Rivers State Branch Controller of CBN  Photo: TheGlittersOnline

The EFCC Zonal Commander lamented the alarming cases of fraudulent investment managers in Rivers State, and the attendant loss of “funds by various investors”.

He solicited for more support from the Bankers’ Bank in order to stem the tide of such cases in the South-South region.

Naibi said: “We are investigating several cases involving fraudulent investment managers, Ponzi scheme operators and other related cases here in the Port Harcourt Zonal Command.

“We cannot investigate any investment fraud case without the CBN. We need to know whether such investment managers are licensed or not because they always claim that they are licensed by the CBN.”

He noted though the CBN always refers investigators of fraudulent investment schemes to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the apex bank could still be supportive in debunking claims of such dubious managers in this regard.

Mrs. Oruwari said that the CBN was aware of issues related to the fraudulent investment managers and working to create more public and market awareness about their sharp practices.

The CBN chief also commended the EFCC for building effective public consciousness about economic and financial crimes and their accompanying consequences.

“Many people are conscious that the EFCC is around, so they are more careful,” adding, “we are both talking finance, money, crime and other related issues. We feel we need to collaborate more.”

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