An internet fraudster, Adio Opeyemi Michael, has been arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for defrauding a 72-year-old Dutch woman of €200,000 (about N40.6 million) in a romance scam.
The 31-year-old suspect was said to have met his victim, identified simply as Jeanet De Jonge, on Netlog dating site and pretended to be a 41-year-old American citizen working as a chef in a Nigerian restaurant and needs a wife.
Confirming the arrest, spokesman for the EFCC, Wilson Uwujaren, said that the suspect’s profile actually attracted Jeanet and she eventually began sending him money through Western Union and Money Gram.
He further disclosed that the suspect collected various sums on the pretext that he was going to use the money to perfect his travel plans and obtain the required documents that would enable him travel to Holland to join or visit Jeanet.
After waiting endlessly for her lover to join her in Holland, Jeanet decided to write a petition to the EFCC.
Using information provided by the victim, EFCC tracked Michael down and arrested him.
The suspect, who is a native of Owu Local Government Area of Ogun State, confessed to the crime.
“She was sending me money monthly, ranging from $800 to $900 from June 2012, through Western Union Money transfer and Money Gram to the extent that Western Union blocked her access,” he said.
“So, she requested that I should go to London to enable her send more money there. I contacted a friend in London called Osas Odiah, who was supposed to receive the money and dispatch same to me in Nigeria.
“She first sent €2,000 to my friend’s account in London and he didn’t remit the money to me. I later opened a Keystone Bank Forex Trade account through which she sent me money,” Michael confessed.
Wilson said the suspect will be arraigned in court once investigation is concluded.