Nigerian Arrested in India over ₦82.7 Million Scam

Indian authorities have arrested a 48-year-old Nigerian man for allegedly duping a diamond broker from south Mumbai of Rs 1.16 crore (about $217,000/₦82.7 Million).

Police said the alleged scammer, Joseph Olajide Akeredolu, is part of a gang that creates fake accounts on social media, approaches people through these accounts, and dupes them under the pretext of sending gifts.

The gang allegedly approached the diamond broker on Instagram on October 10, 2020.

Akeredolu created the Instagram profile using a woman’s name, Alex Zendra. He also claimed to be the captain of a ship in the United Kingdom.

“We started chatting on WhatsApp and after a few days, Zendra told me that she loves me and wanted to marry me. She aspired to start a business with me in Mumbai.

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“On October 17, she sent me a video in which she showed branded shoes, gold chains, watches and U.S. dollars and said that she is sending them for me,” the broker said in his statement to the police.

While he was awaiting the parcel, the broker received a call from a woman posing as a custom official.

She told him that the parcel has been seized at the airport and the broker has to pay money to get it released.

He ended up transferring Rs 1.16 crore to multiple bank account numbers.

The broker also visited New Delhi, where he met a man posing as a customs official – who showed him the U.S. dollars that had been seized from the parcel.

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Eventually, suspecting something is amiss, the broker approached a police station, and a case of cheating under Indian Penal Code and the Information Technology Act was registered.

During the probe, the police found out that Akeredolu is actually based in Delhi.

He surfaced in Mumbai on Wednesday on arrest. When he was produced in court, he was remanded him in police custody.

The police have seized several mobile phones and fake U.S. dollars from him, the report stated.

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