How Nigerian national bags 51 months jail term over romance, grant fraud in America

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Ismaila Fafunmi
Ismaila Fafunmi

A Nigerian man, identified as Ismaila Fafunmi has been sentenced to 51 months in federal prison by a United States court for fraud-related offences.

Fafunmi was imprisoned for fraudulently obtaining over $370k from senior citizens in the U.S.

US district judge, Karen Caldwell, convicted Fafunmi for money laundering of the proceeds of romance fraud and grant fraud schemes targeting senior citizens.

Fafunmi, under federal law, must serve 85 per cent of his prison sentence and upon his release from prison, he will be under the supervision of the U.S. Probation Office for three years.

Fafunmi, a resident of Indianapolis, according to court documents involved in a network that was composed of several layers.

He had admitted in his Plea Agreement that, beginning in June 2018, he and his co-conspirators in Nigeria set up fake profiles on dating websites profiling American men, often military members, to defraud United States-based victims of their money or by offering fake federal grants to senior citizens.

The convict and his co-conspirators, according to the court documents, created bank accounts in various names to retrieve the funds sent by their victims. They also received cash and poster money. The document added that the convict retained a portion of the money they got fraudulently while converting the remainder to wire transfers to Nigeria for his co-conspirators.

Fafunmi pleaded guilty in August 2020 and was sentenced on August 20, 2021.

The case was investigated by the FBI and prosecuted as part of the Department of Justice’s Elder Justice Mission to identify and prosecute those persons who facilitate elder financial exploitation.

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