$11m cyber fraud-A Federal High Court orders the forfeiture of N280m traced to Obinwanne Okeke

The Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday temporarily forfeited to the Federal Government about N280 million found in two bank accounts belonging to Obinwanne Okeke.

Image of EFCC officials

The companies are Invictus Oil and Gas Ltd and Invictus Investment Limited. Okeke is standing trial in the United States of American for an alleged $11m cyber fraud following his indictment alongside 77 other Nigerians.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) told Justice Rilwan Aikawa that Okeke, 31, was “a strong leader of a cybercrime syndicate specialized in business email compromise.” Justice Aikawa made an order for the temporary forfeiture of the sums of N240,250,904.46 and N40,304,106.19, which the anti-graft agency said it found in the Nigerian bank accounts of Invictus Oil and Gas Limited and Invictus Investment Limited, respectively.

Okeke was arrested in August this year by the American Federal Bureau of Investigation as the ringleader of a cybercrime syndicate, which had defrauded many American citizens to the tune of $11m “through fraudulent wire transfer instructions in a massive coordinated business email compromise scheme.”

He was in 2016 celebrated by Forbes International as one of Africa’s most outstanding 30 entrepreneurs under the age of 30 and described by the magazine as “proof that there is hope for Africa.”  

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