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EFCC Hands Over $22,000 Recovered From Internet Fraudster To FBI

EFCC Hands Over $22,000 Recovered From Fraudsters To FBI

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has handed over $22,000, recovered from convicted internet fraudster Hakeem Ayotunde Olanrewaju, to the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) in Lagos. The transfer of funds took place on Friday, according to a statement by EFCC spokesperson Dele Oyewale on Saturday.

Olanrewaju was convicted by Justice Nicholas Oweibo of the Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos, on August 15, 2023, for identity theft and impersonation. Justice Oweibo sentenced Olanrewaju to two years in prison and ordered that the recovered funds be returned to his victim in the United States.

During the handover ceremony, Michael T. Wetkas, Acting Director of the EFCC’s Lagos Zonal Command, reiterated the commission’s commitment to fighting crime and maintaining order in the nation. “We are pleased to be handing over these proceeds of crime today. The EFCC is always ready to do more,” Wetkas stated.

FBI Legal Attaché Charles Smith acknowledged the successful collaboration between the EFCC and the FBI. He highlighted the significance of recovering funds from Business Email Compromise (BEC) schemes, which severely impact U.S. businesses. “For affected companies to recover their money within one to two years gives hope and brings some level of justice, even if not all perpetrators are identified,” Smith said. He expressed optimism about continuing and strengthening the partnership between the two agencies.

Also present at the event were EFCC officials, including Head of Public Affairs Lagos, DCE Ayo Oyewole; Head of Investigation, ACE I Deborah Oni; and Head of Advance Fee Fraud 1, CSE Alex Ogbole. Representing the FBI were Assistant Legal Attaché Michael Thomas and Foreign Service Investigator Ayo Solademi.

Dele Oyewale
Head, Media & Publicity

This Article is Fact-Checked. See Policy.

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