EFCC recovers N798.5m, raises concern on cybercrimes in Kano
• Arrests 113 Internet fraudsters, secures 53 convictions in Edo, Delta, Ondo
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday said it had recovered N798.5 million illicit funds and prosecuted offenders for money laundering in the last eight months.
Kano Zonal Head of the Commission, Akaninyene Ezima, who disclosed this at a press conference in Kano, said about 280 suspects were arrested between January and August for various financial related offences.
He said that the commission recovered over $690,400 (N248, 544,000) from three intending passengers at Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport (MAKIA) in their attempt to launder the hard currency abroad.
He added that the zonal office of the commission is presently pursing over 51 cases before Federal High Court in Kano.
He, however, warned operators of Bureau De Change in the zone to be mindful on the illegal activities of money launderers and tasked them to abide strictly by relevant guidelines and documentation their customers must adhere to before transaction.
“Another disturbing crime is the black money crime, known as (wash-wash), which concentrates on the stealing of personal banking information. We, therefore, call on members of the public to be very wary so as not to fall victims to such scams.
In a related vein, the EFCC, Benin Zonal Office, yesterday said that it had in collaboration with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) arrested at least 113 Internet fraudsters, popularly referred to as ‘yahoo yahoo’ boys, in its jurisdiction, comprising Edo, Delta and Ondo states.
The Benin Zonal Director of the EFCC, Mukhtar Bello, who disclosed this to journalists in Benin City, pledged the commission’s unflinching support in the fight against corruption to rid the society of economic and financial crimes.
He said that many of the corruption cases were ongoing in courts, adding that it had from January 2019 till date secured 53 convictions.
“Several cars, laptop computers, mobile phones, flash drives, Internet modems and charms were recovered from the suspects,” he said.
The zonal director said that the commission’s collaboration with the FBI led to the arrest of a female suspected cyber fraudster (names withheld) who worked in collaboration with foreign counterpart in darkweb, saying: “She is involved in obtaining/stealing people’s identification information which she forwards to her American collaborator. Her collaborator uses it to file for fraudulent tax return with the Internal Revenue Service. Her cut valued at N656,371,490 has been traced to her.”
Besides, Bello disclosed that the Benin zonal office independently arrested a cybercriminal and two siblings who involved in searching for victims’ e-mail addresses, especially official business e-mail addresses, create a phishing link and compromising the process to defraud unsuspecting victims.