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Home Breaking Two men from Newham who were involved in an online romance fraud scheme that scammed £674,000 from multiple women and a man in the UK and overseas, have been jailed

Two men from Newham who were involved in an online romance fraud scheme that scammed £674,000 from multiple women and a man in the UK and overseas, have been jailed

  Detectives from the Met’s Specialist Crime Command identified five victims who were based in the USA, Switzerland and different parts of the UK.     Two men from Newham who were involved in an online romance fraud scheme that scammed £674,000 from multiple women and a man in the UK and overseas, have been jailedJames Olagbaiye, 47 ( of Barking Road, Newham was sentenced to four years and four months’ imprisonment at Southwark Crown Court on Friday, 14 October after pleading guilty to conspiracy to money launder.   Two men from Newham who were involved in an online romance fraud scheme that scammed £674,000 from multiple women and a man in the UK and overseas, have been jailed Adesola Adebayo, 38 of Barking Road, Newham was sentenced to four years and six months’ imprisonment at Southwark Crown Court on Friday, 7 October after pleading guilty to:

  • Conspiracy to money launder – proceeds of dating scams;
  • Fraud by false representation – committing a dating scam;
  • Conspiracy to commit fraud – Covid 19 Bounce Back Loans.

Both men pleaded guilty on Friday, 25 March at Southwark Crown Court. The court heard that both men were part of an international organised crime group based in the UK and Nigeria who scammed multiple women and a man out of a total in excess of £674,000 by committing online romance fraud. The fraud was uncovered following the arrest of another man in August 2020. Detectives went on to identify the five victims. One victim, a woman in her sixties, from Switzerland, personally lost the equivalent of £612,000. The female victim believed her online romance was with a British doctor and biologist living in London. The scammers sent her a photo of a fake British passport bearing the photo of an older gentleman as part of the ruse. This false online persona claimed to have produced ventilation machines for the National Health Service (NHS) to help in the fight against the worldwide Covid 19 pandemic and sought the victim’s money as a loan for this venture. After paying the ‘loan’ into different UK and USA based money mule bank accounts under the defendants’ control. These ‘mule’ account holders agree to launder the proceeds of crime by relinquishing control of their accounts to another or are paid a fee to receive and move on money. The fake doctor also claimed he had been arrested overseas and required further financial support, all part of the ruse. This victim only realised she had been scammed after she was contacted by detectives from the Met’s Hendon based Economic Crime Unit following the arrest of the two men. The team identified a further female victim from the USA, a man and two women from the UK. The men were arrested on 29 October 2020 at an address in Newham. During their arrests, officers seized their mobile phones and bank statements which led them to identify further victims. Later examination of the evidence revealed that Adebayo had also provided a safe address of a trusted associate, who would agree to receive mail, so bank accounts could be set up for the purpose of falsely claiming Covid 19 Bounce Bank Loans. Adebayo attempted to claim £98,000 but was not successful Detective Constable Chris Collins from the Met’s Specialist Crime, said: “These men have spun a web of lies to their victims and abused their honest intentions in the most awful way. “I would ask anyone in an online relationship to think carefully before meeting demands for money no matter how heartfelt and convincing their story is.” A confiscation investigation will follow convictions, where assets are sought in favour of returning some of the losses to the victims. If you suspect you have been a victim of fraud or if you believe someone is trying to access your pension, you should call Action Fraud – 0300 123 2040. You can read more ➡️ https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/investmentfraud

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