Nigerian entrepreneur Obinwanne Okeke jailed for 10 years in $  11m email scam

Celebrated Nigerian entrepreneur Obinwanne Okeke has been jailed for 10 years by a US federal court for masterminding an $ 11 million cyber fraud on a British company.

The court heard thatthrough subterfuge and impersonation, Obinwanne Okeke, engaged in a multi-year global business email and computer hacking scheme that caused a staggering $ 11 million in losses to his victims,” Raj Parekh, Acting US Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, 在声明中说 Tuesday after the sentencing.
British company Unatrac Holding Limitedthe export sales office for industrial machinery company Caterpillarwere the victims of an online heist perpetrated by Okeke and his team, who had obtained their login details through phishing emails, the justice department said.
“在四月份 2018, a Unatrac executive fell prey to a phishing email that allowed conspirators to capture login credentials,” according to the statement.
    The conspirators sent fraudulent wire transfer requests and attached fake invoices. Okeke participated in the effort to victimize Unatrac through fraudulent wire transfers totaling nearly $ 11 百万, which was transferred overseas,” 声明添加.
    Okeke, who was hailed as a promising entrepreneur and appeared on the Forbes magazine ’30 under 30 list,’ had earlier pleaded guilty to the charge in June 2020, after he was arrested during a visit to the US.
    Okeke, who operated a chain of companies under parent firm Invictus Groupbased in Nigeria, was found to have committed a series of wire frauds between 2015 至 2019 along with others.
    The conspirators obtained and compiled the credentials of hundreds of victims, including victims in the Eastern District of Virginia,” the US justice department said.
    The FBI will not allow cyber criminals free reign in the digital world to prey on U.S. companies,” Brian Dugan, the FBI’s Special Agent in Charge of Norfolk Field Office said after the sentencing.
    Okeke was arrested by the FBI at Dulles International Airport in Virginia, 在八月 2019, just before he got on a flight to Nigeria during a visit to the US.
    His sentencing was initially scheduled for October 22, 2020, but was deferred until February 16, 2021.
    在六月 2016, Okeke who was 28 当时, was recognized by Forbes among Africa’s Most Promising Entrepreneurs under 30 and was praised for his strides in construction, agriculture, oil and gas, telecoms and real estate.
      Forbes article stated that he was the 17th child in a polygamous home of four wives, and was born into an impoverished background.
      According to Forbes, Okeke named his company Invictusafter one of Nelson Mandela’s favorite a poems, by William Ernest Henley, about the undefeated and unconquerable soul of a hard worker, from an impoverished background, who will not give up.