Two members of a Nigerian organised crime group who committed more than £1m worth of fraud and money laundering after staging a mass phishing con have been jailed after a National Crime Agency investigation.
According to the UK National Crime Agency, Emmanuel Mmaduike and Olawale Kashimawo, both 31, obtained thousands of business email addresses and passwords which they used to divert payments from companies to themselves.
They were said to have spent the money on a lavish lifestyle – hiring a helicopter, driving flash cars – and regularly posed for photographs of themselves with wads of money, expensive watches and drinking champagne.
Confiscation orders are being pursued against both men.
Known as business email compromise (BEC), the operation involves the criminal impersonation of a senior executive and attempting to convince the victim to transfer funds.
Mmaduike was said to have played the role of accessing the victim’s email accounts and change invoices so that payments were directed to mule bank accounts run by Kashimawo.
His collaborator then laundered the cash by arranging withdrawals and international bank transfers which were carried out by other fraudsters.
The pair are believed to have carried out more than £1m of fraud and money laundering between April 2015 and November 2015, according to the NCA.
Mmaduike was jailed in March 2017 for six years and 10 months after he admitted money laundering and fraud.
He also admitted perverting the course of justice in relation to a sham marriage to a Dutch national.
On May 17, 2018, at Kingston Crown Court, Kashimawo was also jailed for six years and nine months after admitting two counts of conspiracy to commit money laundering.
In the same vein, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) arrested over 12 suspected internet fraudsters popularly known as ‘Yahoo Boys’ during a raid at Club 57 in the Ikoyi area of Lagos earlier this month.