3 Siblings, 21 other suspects in police net for cybercrime

* Suspects accused of online dating scams, fake bank alerts, hacking, cyberstalking, others

Emmanuel Akosile | ConsumerConnect

The Nigeria Police Force Headquarters has paraded three brothers of the same parents and 21 other suspects for their involvement in cybercrime.

The suspects, among them a female, were arrested in Abuja, FCT, Monday, June 22  for cases of romance and online dating scams, generating and deployment of fake bank alerts, report has said.

Other offences they are charged with are hacking and fraudulent wire transfers, cyberstalking and impersonation of high-profile personalities in Nigeria and beyond.

It was gathered that the suspects were found to be in possession of 11 laptop computers, 37 mobile phones, 11 SIM cards of different telecoms networks, 5 international passports, 12 ATM cards, fake US Dollar bills and quantities of dry leaves suspected to be marijuana at the time of their arrest.

While parading the suspects before newsmen on the premises of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), in Abuja, Frank Mba, Force Public Relations Officer (FPRO) said that the suspects most of whom had been arrested for various crimes in the past and charged to court and even served various prison terms, are unrepentant.

They have gone back to the same crime, he stated.

The FPRO said that three of the suspects who happen to be siblings of the same parents had impersonated senior police officers, including himself and Abba Kyari, Commander of IGP Intelligence Response Team, and John Kudalor, Inspector-General of Police, in Ghana.

He said the suspects who specialise in defrauding Nigerians and foreigners use their computers to produce fake passports, bank apps, and Facebook accounts which they use to deceive their unsuspecting victims.

The three brothers, Emmanuel Ushie, 23; Henry Ushie, 30; and graduate of Statistics from the Anambra State University; and Matthew Ushie, 28-years-old, and OND graduate from the Federal Polytechnic, Oko, opened a fake Frank Mba Foundation bank account with FCMB to defraud innocent Nigerians of their hard-earned monies under the pretext that the foundation was raising money to help vulnerable Nigerians during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The duo, whose elder brother, Emmanuel, is a leader of the gang, were arrested at their hideout in Ihiala, Anambra State, Mba said.

Mba said Police investigation revealed that Matthew Ushie was arrested in Ghana last year in a well-publicised bust of fraudsters where he and other international fraudsters used the name of Ghana’s Inspector-General of Police, John Kudalor, to defraud unsuspecting Ghanaian policemen.

They did so under the guise of providing opportunities for the officers to attend a United Nations peacekeeping mission, using a fake Facebook account.

Information about his arrest and parading before the press in Ghana was available on the Internet, according to the FPRO.

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