Three Nigerian citizens have been indicted in US federal court in connection with a business email compromise (BEC) scam that allegedly stole more than $6 million from victims.
Kosi Goodness Simon Ebo, 29, was extradited from Canada to the United States earlier this month. Department of Justice press releasewill appear in federal court on Friday.
Two of Simon-Ebo’s alleged co-conspirators, James Junior Aliyu, 28, and Henry Onyedikachi Echefu, 31. Aliyu and Echev, also known as “Old Soldiers” or “Ghosts”, were arrested in South Africa where fraud was allegedly carried out.
The three men allegedly conspired with others to carry out the BEC scam from February 2016 to at least July 2017. Gaining unauthorized access to personal and corporate email accounts, a man collected information and sent fraudulent messages from his spoofed email address. Trick victims into transferring money to bank accounts under their control.
Specifically, Simon-Ebo was indicted in connection with wire fraud involving $6,343,533.10 in victims’ funds.
If convicted, the man could face up to 20 years in federal prison for each of the wire fraud conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy and wire fraud counts. Additionally, Aliyu could face up to 20 years in federal prison for his money laundering charges.
Last year, the FBI said: Over $43 billion Lost to BEC and email account compromise scams since 2016.
Commentators have suggested that the increasing adoption of telework is responsible for the increase in BEC attacks in recent years.
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