Nigerian scammer arrested with help of QLD police

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Nigerian scammer arrested with help of QLD police

A Nigerian man has been arrested over an Internet lonely-hearts scam, which stripped a 45-year-old Queensland man of thousands of dollars.

The overseas arrest came about after a close collaboration of the Queensland Police Service and the Nigerian Economic Financial Crimes Commission.

The 23 year old man was arrested this week in Nigeria and charged with fraud offences.

He is accused of targeting a 45-year-old Queensland man through an online personal website. The man, believing he had met the woman of his dreams, lost approximately $20,000.

Police Minister Judy Spence congratulated Queensland Police for playing a pivotal role in the arrest.

“Queensland police are leading the world when it comes to the investigation of Advance Fee Fraud Internet-based offences,” said Spence.

“This week’s result is a testament to the hard work and expertise of our officers.

“The case serves as a strong reminder to people that they need to be careful when it comes to online relationships.

“Requests to send money or personal information like account details overseas to an online companion should be treated with extreme caution.

“Previous estimates put financial losses to Queenslanders for Nigerian related fraud at around $500,000 a month.

“The most recent assessments now show that this figure is believed to be more in the vicinity of $800,000 to $1 million per month.

“These huge losses can so easily be avoided if people think with their heads, not their hearts.”

Detective Superintendent Brian Hay, of the Queensland Police Service Fraud and Corporate Crime Group, said, “An examination of 37 case studies showed that for every $1 sent to Nigeria, $1.04 is sent to other countries as part of this fraud.

“Investigations showed money was sent to 42 different countries, proving the Nigerian fraud scams work through a global network.”

The top 10 countries to which money was sent were:

• Nigeria
• United Kingdom
• Ghana
• UAE
• United States of America
• Germany
• Switzerland
• Togo
• Spain
• Benin

In their continued effort to address this area of crime, the QPS Fraud and Corporate Crime Group will be hosting a National Advance Fee Fraud Symposium in Brisbane next month.

International guests will include members of the Nigerian Economic Financial Crimes Commission, United States Department of Justice, FBI, National Police Service of Holland and others.

Up to 100 people are expected to attend the symposium, aimed at government departments, law enforcement agencies, the private sector and the community.

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