Internet Dating and Romance Scams

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EFCC arrests two for duping nurse of €61,500

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arrested two suspected fraudsters, Gabriel Xavi, a.k.a. Collins Page and Cyril Aikhaituamen, for fleecing a Belgian nurse, Goryczka Janina.

The EFCC spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, said the suspects met the 49-year-old nurse on Facebook and were able to trick her into parting with €61,500, about N13.5m.

Uwujaren said, “The victim allegedly met one of the accused persons sometime in January, 2014. He introduced himself as Collins Page, a Croatian engineer resident in Wigan, England.

“Within days of their meeting, Page contacted her with the story that he was in Nigeria to supervise a construction project in Edo State and that he was having difficulty with his credit card as it had been blocked for security reasons.

“He solicited Janina’s assistance for cash. Goryczka sent him money until she had transferred a total of €61,500 through one Emmanuel Okoh, based in Cape Town, South Africa, Junior Best and Cyril Ojiemen.”

It was gathered that when Page kept pressurising the victim for more money, she confided in a friend who told her that she might have fallen into the hands of scammers.

The victim subsequently contacted the police in her country, who in turn contacted the EFCC after preliminary investigation.

The duo of Xavi, aka Page and Aikhaituamen were arrested by the EFCC and arraigned before Justice E.F. Ikponmwen of the Edo State High Court, Benin, on charges bordering on conspiracy and obtaining money under false pretences.

While Xavi was slammed with 12 counts, Aikhaituamen was dragged to the court on six counts.

Two charges read in part, “That you, Gabriel Xavi (a.k.a. Collins Page), Aikhaituamen Junior, Ojiemen Cyril (still at large) and Emmanuel Okoh (still at large), sometime between January and February 2014, at Benin, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, with intent to defraud, conspired to obtain money by false pretences from Janina Goryczka, offences contrary to and punishable by Section 1(3) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006.

“That you, Gabriel Xavi (a.k.a. Collins Page) and Emmanuel Okoh (still at large) on or about the 31st day of January, 2014, at Benin, within the jurisdiction of this honourable court, with intent to defraud, obtained the sum of €40,000 from Janina Goryczka on the false representation that you were a Croatian engineer handling a road construction project in Edo State, Nigeria, and the money was for purchase of equipment and materials towards the project, which representation you knew to be false.”

The duo, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges after they were read to them.

The prosecuting counsel, G. K. Latono, prayed the court to remand them in prison custody.

Counsel to the first accused person, P. E. Onobun, and counsel to the second accused, C. N. Dike, prayed the court for a short adjournment to enable them file applications for bail.

Justice Ikponmwen adjourned the case till December 8, 2014 for consideration of bail applications. He ordered that the defendants be remanded in prison custody.


November 25, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

LaPorte County couple loses $100,000 in Nigerian scam

November 17, 2014 4:58 pm  •  Stan Maddux Times Correspondent

LAPORTE | A visit to a dating website resulted in a LaPorte County man and his wife being scammed out of about $100,000.

LaPorte County police on Monday said documentation provided by the woman showed more than $20,000 of the funds were wired by her 40-year-old husband to Nigeria.

Many such scams originate out of Nigeria, but local law enforcement may be able to do little unless they receive help from outside authorities, said LaPorte County Police Chief of Detectives Pat Cicero.

“We’re going to try and help him out as much as we can but there are some jurisdictional issues,” said Cicero.

The Kingsbury-area woman reported Sunday night her husband about a year ago started having contact with a woman on a dating website.

The woman at some point asked him for money so he could secure an inheritance and she would pay him back once he collected.

The scam was discovered two weeks ago by his wife when she noticed suspicious charges on her credit card and learned about her husband’s activity on the dating website, police said.

Her husband had also given the woman from the dating website, who went by the name “Miss Sanders,” his driver’s license number along with personal information like his Social Security Number and credit card information.

Several lines of credit were also opened for him to secure cash advances to forward to the woman, who claimed to be from Mississippi, police said.

Police said the victim’s wife was gathering other documentation to show where the remainder of the funds were transferred.

So far, police said investigators learned three men in Nigeria picked up the money that was wired and have possible names of the suspects.

Cicero said the same scam is being pulled nationwide but he did not know the extent law enforcement in Nigeria might be willing to cooperate with police agencies in this country to try and stop it.

“This is an issue that’s been ongoing for a very long time. The United States government is aware of it. We’ll do what we can,” said Cicero.

November 19, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

“Nigerian Prince” from San Antonio arrested

Posted Tuesday, November 18th 2014 @ 6pm

A San Antonio man, who was busted for his roll in a wire fraud plot that stretched from Arizona to Nigeria, looked less like the so-called Prince in those email scams and more like a homeless bum with stains on his sweatpants.

Gerald Wiley, 42, has been charged with Theft.

Investigators say he is what is commonly called the Money Mule.  Someone broke into the victim’s email account… and used it to make a wire transfer to Wiley’s bank account.

“Mr. Wiley then took a cut of that money and sent the rest to Nigeria,” Officer Doug Greene tells News Radio 1200 WOAI.

The victim in this case was in Arizona, but investigators believe there are more people across the country who fell victim to the scam.  As many as ten people are believed to be part of the scam.

“We want the public to be aware of these situations,” Officer Greene said. “If they see something too good to be true, promising a certain amount of money, it’s too good to be true.”

Wiley is also being investigated by the FBI’s cyber crime task force and could face federal charges.

Read more:

November 19, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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