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Cybercrime: Nigerian found guilty of bank fraud, faces sentence January 18 -FBI

*The US Department of Justice, Attorney’s Office of the Northern District of Ohio, convicts 31-year-old Blessing Adeleke along with others for conspiracy, stealing of credit card information, and signing of 16 fraudulent cheques to purchase items for themselves

Gbenga Kayode | ConsumerConnect

The United States Department of Justice (DOJ), Attorney’s Office of the Northern District of Ohio has announced the conviction of Blessing Adeleke, a 31-year-old Nigerian in the American country.

ConsumerConnect reports a federal jury, in a statement, signed and issued by Daniel Ball of USAO, Thursday, October 13, 2022, said it convicted  Adeleke of one count of “conspiracy to commit bank fraud and 16 counts of bank fraud for his role in a conspiracy to obtain stolen financial information, make fraudulent and unauthorised purchases of retail goods and gift cards and steal funds from victim bank accounts in Northern Ohio and elsewhere.”

According to the Jury, from January 2014 through October 2016, the convicted Nigerian served as an administrator for an online marketplace, Shad0w.info, where compromised data, such as credit numbers and personally identifiable information (PII), were sold illegally.

The statement noted: “As part of the conspiracy, Adeleke and others obtained stolen credit card information and purchased items, such as retail goods and gift cards for themselves. ”

Adeleke shared this stolen credit card information with others, including co-defendant Kylie Ann Harlow, the statement said.

The US DOJ also noted the court documents state that Adeleke and Harlow shipped retail goods purchased with the stolen financial information to Harlow and others and, in some instances, returned the goods and gift cards to retail stores to obtain cash.

The Jury stated: “Adeleke and Harlow eventually forwarded the fraudulently obtained goods, gift cards and cash to other members of the conspiracy for their personal enrichment.

“Adeleke gained access to at least one bank account belonging to a victim in Pepper Pike, Ohio, from which he sent 16 fraudulent checks.”

The statement said Kylie Ann Harlow previously pleaded guilty to her role in the criminal scheme, and was sentenced June 2021.

Following the Cleveland FBI investigation of the crime, the Jury stated that Adeleke is scheduled to be sentenced January 18, 2023.

The investigated case is being prosecuted by Assistant US Attorneys Brian S. Deckert and Daniel J. Riedl.

Before Adeleke’s conviction in the United States, it is noted that the US Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs provided significant support and assistance in securing the defendant’s arrest and extradition from Ghana, a West African country.

The US DOJ, therefore, applauds its Ghanian partners, specifically the Ministry of Interior, the Office of the Attorney General and Ministry of Justice and Interpol at Ghana Police Service-Criminal Investigation for supporting Adeleke’s extradition.

The FBI Legal Attaché in Accra and the US Marshals Service also provided significant support and assistance to Adeleke’s extradition, the statement said.

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