Sunday, November 1, 2020

Nigeria: Ex-banker, wife arrested for laundering $1.49 million of BEC proceeds

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Lagos office, has arrested a former banker, Rowly Isioro and his wife, Ovuomarhoni Naomi, for alleged involvement in Business Email Compromise (BEC) fraud and money laundering.

Isioro, a former Assistant General Manager with a first-generation bank allegedly laundered $1.49million through Naomi’s bank accounts in Nigeria.

The couple’s arrest followed a petition from the Federal Bureau of Investigation through the office of the Legal Attache, United States Consulate, Lagos, about their alleged involvement in computer-based fraud, stealing and money laundering.

The EFCC spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, disclosed in a statement in Abuja on Monday that investigation revealed that Naomi met one Michael Uziewe (who is still at large) in  Atlanta,  Georgia, United States, sometime in 2016, and introduced him to foreign exchange business.

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Through this encounter, Naomi and husband allegedly turned their two registered companies, Marhoni General Services Ltd. and Multaid Plus Ltd. into a conduit for the dispersal of funds wired by Uziewe, who allegedly owned Global Investment Network.

”Naomi in statements volunteered to the commission confirmed she had been receiving monies in dollars, with instructions to pay the naira equivalent into accounts provided by Uziewe.

”Facts have also emerged that each time Naomi received the dollar transfers, she makes over-the-counter withdrawals in breach of financial regulations that such transactions go through the financial system, and sell them to Bureau de Change operators for naira equivalents, ” the statement explained.

Isioro, a banker of over 22 years’ experience reportedly confessed that he was aware that his wife received money from someone she met in the US, while she pays the naira equivalent to various accounts on the instruction of the US-based partner.

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Isioro was allegedly relieved of his appointment by his former employers as a result of his involvement in the money laundering scheme.

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