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How FBI Nailed Nigerian Internet Fraudster, Hushpuppi

ADEOLA AJAYI, EKITI

From the beginning to the downfall of Hushpuppi. CMM vividly show details
of how the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation unearthed the fraudulent activities of Abbas Ramon Olorunwa widely known as Hushpuppi despite having collaboration with top personalities to assist him with the scam.

His rayhushpuppi@gmail.com contain all hidden secret of wire transfer between February 2018 in the amounts of $250,000 and $2,397,000.

According to the document confirmed by Saharareporters to CMM it read

“Beginning no later than October 15, 2019 and continuing through at least October 17, 2019 in the county of Los Angeles in the Central District of California and elsewhere, the defendant conspired to launder proceeds fraudulently obtained from a law firm in violation of Code Section Offense Description 18 U.S.C. § 1956,” Special Agent Innocenti began in his testimony.

“iPhone of co-conspirator 1 (reviewed pursuant to a federal search warrant issued in this District) reflect that Abbas, co-conspirator 1 and co-conspirator 2 with others committed a BEC scheme that defrauded a victim in the United States of approximately $922,857.76 including approximately $396,050 that Abbas, co-conspirator 1 and co-conspirator 2 laundered while co-conspirator 2 was in Los Angeles, California.

“Second, Abbas and co-conspirator 1 conspired to launder funds intended to be stolen through fraudulent wire transfers from a foreign financial institution (the “Foreign Financial Institution”), in which fraudulent wire transfers, totalling approximately €13 million (approximately USD $14.7 million), were sent to bank accounts around the world in February 2019.

“Abbas, specifically provided co-conspirator 1 with two bank accounts in Europe that Abbas anticipated would each receive €5m of the fraudulently obtained funds including a fraudulent scheme to steal £100m from an English Premier League football club.”

“The email account rayhushpuppi@gmail.com also contained emails with attachments relating to wire transfers in large dollar values, including wire transfers in February 2018 in the amounts of $250,000 and $2,397,000.

“Based on the context of the emails, as well as other information gathered during the FBI investigation about one of the sender email accounts, it appears that these emails were related to fraudulent transactions.

“In or around October 2019, Abbas had conspired with co-conspirator 1 and co-conspirator 2 to commit a fraudulent wire transfer and money-laundering scheme in which a U.S. victim (the “Victim Law 15 Firm”) lost approximately $922,857.76. The messages reflected that part of the scheme, including acts in furtherance of the conspiracy, occurred while co-conspirator 2 was physically present in the Central District of California.

“Records obtained from JPMorgan Chase Bank (“Chase”) for a bank account held in the U.S. (the “Chase Account”) reflect that the Chase Account received a wire transfer on October 15, 2019 for approximately $922,857.76 from the Victim Law Firm. On October 17, 2019, there was a wire transfer from the Chase Account to an account at Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (“CIBC”), in Toronto, Ontario, for approximately $396,050. Bank records reflect that the specific account at CIBC ended in 1716 (the “CIBC Account”), consistent with what is discussed below in paragraphs 21, 24, and 25. The remaining funds in the Chase Account were transferred to other accounts.

“On February 12, 2019, the Foreign Financial Institution suffered a computer intrusion and cyber-heist in which approximately €13 million (approximately $14.7 million) was fraudulently wired from the Foreign Financial Institution to bank accounts in multiple countries.

“In a message on January 16, 2019, co-conspirator 1 contacted Abbas asking for two European bank accounts that could receive €5m, which he said would be from the country in which the Foreign Financial Institution is located. Co-conspirator 1 stated several times that the “hit” would occur on February 12.

“After some discussion, Abbas sent co-conspirator 1 the account information for a Romanian bank account, which he said could be used for “large amounts”.

“Abbas further said he could provide another account and co-conspirator said that it would be a payment of €5m million to each account.

“On February 10, 2019, co-conspirator 1 told Abbas, “Brother, tonight is my deadline to submit anything more,” and then asked, “Do u want add one more or just stick to that one u gave me ?” The next day, Abbas responded and provided account information for another bank account in Bulgaria.

“In addition to participating in those fraudulent schemes, Abbas and co-conspirator 1 discussed additional BEC frauds and or other fraudulent schemes in 2019. These included schemes where Abbas and co-conspirator 1 sought to fraudulently obtain millions and at times hundreds of millions of U.S. dollars and UK pounds sterling.

“On March 10, 2019, co-conspirator 1 requested a bank account in the U.A.E. from Abbas into which approximately $5m could be deposited from a victim in the United States. Co-conspirator 1 told Abbas that the “job” would be “Monday am USA time,” and after some discussion, wrote, “Brother, I need it now or we will lose our chance pls”.

“Abbas responded by providing bank account information for an account at Commercial Bank International in Dubai, U.A.E.

“On April 30, 2019, co-conspirator 1 told Abbas, “Brother, I have 4 companies in the UK ready to switch bank accounts on file but the account has to be open beneficiary”.

“After some discussion, co-conspirator 1 further stated, “I have a room working for me, we have leads and company contracts. My guy are changing accounts on file for 100m contracts and there payment are once or twice a week 1-5m. I have four ready to switch up,” it was disclosed.

“On February 24, 2020, rayhushpuppi@gmail.com received a scan of a Saint Christopher (St. Kitts) and Nevis passport of Abbas with the passport number ending in 4154. The passport was issued in St. Kitts in February 2020 and also listed Abbas’ birthday as October 11, 1982.

“On February 23, 2020, rayhushpuppi@gmail.com sent an email containing a photograph of a different Federal Republic of Nigeria passport of Abbas with a passport number ending in 5915, as well as a U.A.E. visa with the same resident ID number ending in 9431.

“The email account rayhushpuppi@gmail.com also contained photographs or scans of foreign identification documents of approximately 13 persons other than Abbas of different nationalities (including Nigeria, U.K., Kenya, U.A.E., U.S.A., and Pakistan),” the affidavit said.

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