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EFCC nabs Igwilo, long time suspect on FBI wanted list over fraud, identity theft

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Monday said it has arrested one Osondu Victor Igwilo, who had been on the watch list of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), since 2018.

The anti-graft agency, who said its Lagos Command swooped on the suspect on March 11, and arrested him along with three other suspects.

In a statement, EFCC said the 52 years old Igwilo, who is the alleged leader of a criminal network of “ catchers’’ was arrested alongside Okafor Nnamdi Chris, Nwodu Uchenna Emmaunel and John Anazo Achukwu at a studio in the Sangotedo area of Lagos for an alleged fraud, money laundering and identity theft to the tune of about $100m.

Before their arrest, Igwilo and his accomplices had allegedly been involved in an advance-fee scheme that involved false promises of investment funding by individuals who impersonated some United States of America (USA), bank officials in person and via the internet.

Investigation revealed that those who fell victims of the suspects’ criminal activities were asked to make certain payments before they could receive their funding.

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It was also revealed that proceeds of the scheme were allegedly laundered through U.S. bank accounts and diverted back to the alleged perpetrators in Nigeria.

Consequently, Igwilo was placed on the FBI watch list, following a criminal complaint filed against him in the United States District Court, Houston, Texas in December 2016.

Following their arrest, five houses located in choice areas of Lagos were recovered from Igwilo.

The suspects will soon be charged to court, according to the EFCC.

Meanwhile, the American mission in Nigeria has commended the anti-graft agency for partnering with the FBI to arrest the suspect who had been on its wanted list.

“With Justice as our mutual priority, we congratulate @officialEFCC for partnering with the @FBI  & arresting long-time wanted suspect Igwilo for fraud conspiracy, money laundering and aggravated identity theft,” the US Mission Nigeria wrote on its Twitter handle.

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