Nigeria and Kenya are like brothers that sometimes don’t see eye to eye but are related by the need for fast life and will do anything to get it including fraud.
No wonder Nigeria is Africa’s King of corruption, a title that has been hotly pursued by Kenya especially in the last 5 years. “we go catchup”
Hushpuppi, real name Ramon Olorunwa Abbas, the indicted Nigerian scammer is facing a long time in prison for defrauding billionaires especially in the Middle East. There is no doubt why he chose Kenya to launder some of his cash. The reason is already covered by the formative paragraphs of this article.
Late in July, top lawyer Donald B Kipkorir had revealed how he was approached by the Nigerian to keep some of his money but refused. It was a wise decision as some other Kenyan lawyer and law firm aren’t as lucky.
Hushpuppi had a Kenyan accomplice by the name Abdulrahman Imraan Juma, a.k.a. “Abdul”.
“Sometimes back, Abulrahman aka Abdul asked my friend Fauz Khalid in Mombasa to introduce him to me. Abdul came to see me & wanted me to keep money from Hushpuppi,” the lawyer Tweeted “I told him I only deal with corporate clients,” Kipkorir wrote on Facebook.
Investigators estimate Hushpuppi with the help of his accomplices fraudulently acquired excess of Sh2.6 billion before they were caught.
The United States Department of Justice, in recently released documents, revealed that that disgraced Nigerian Instagram star Hushpuppi, conspired with the 28-year-old Kenyan Abdul and a Nigerian Kelly Chibuzo Vincent to defraud a Qatari businessperson by posing as consultants and bankers who could facilitate a loan to finance a planned school’s construction in Qatar.
The unlucky Kenya law firm
After Donald B. Kipkorir had refused to ‘handle’ money from Hushpuppi, another Kenyan firm, Okatch and Partners Advocates was more than willing.
But, first some background.
A US federal grand jury indicted Hushpuppi on three counts in a scheme to defraud a Qatari Businessman of Sh$1.1 million (Sh120 million) attempting to finance the construction of a school for children in Qatar – and the subsequent laundering of illicit proceeds through bank accounts around the world.
The 37-year old Nigerian scammer pleaded guilty in April in Los Angeles, US federal court.
A version of Abbas’ plea agreement outlines his role in the school-finance scheme, as well as several other cyber and business email compromise schemes that cumulatively caused more than $24 million in losses, according to prosecutors.
“The defendants allegedly faked the financing of a Qatari school by playing the roles of bank officials and creating a bogus website in a scheme that also bribed a foreign official to keep the elaborate pretense going after the victim was tipped off,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Tracy L. Wilkison.
“Mr. Abbas, who played a significant role in the scheme, funded his luxurious lifestyle by laundering illicit proceeds generated by con artists who use increasingly sophisticated means,” Wilkison said. “In conjunction with our law enforcement partners, we will identify and prosecute perpetrators of business email compromise scams, which is a massive and growing international crime problem.”
The three U.S.-based defendants are Yusuf Adekinka Anifowoshe, also known as “AJ,” 26, of Brooklyn, New York; Rukayat Motunraya Fashola, also known as “Morayo,” 28, of Valley Stream, New York; and Bolatito Tawakalitu Agbabiaka, also known as “Bolamide,” 34, of Linden, New Jersey. They were arrested last Thursday.
The indictment alleges that Abbas conspired with Abdulrahman Imraan Juma, also known as “Abdul,” 28, of Kenya, and Kelly Chibuzo Vincent, 40, of Nigeria, to defraud the Qatari businessperson by claiming to be consultants and bankers who could facilitate a loan to finance construction of the planned school.
Juma allegedly posed as a facilitator and consultant for the illusory bank loans, while Abbas played the role of “Malik,” a Wells Fargo banker in New York, according to court documents. Vincent, in turn, allegedly provided support for the false narratives fed to the victim by, among other things, creating bogus documents and arranging for the creation of a fake bank website and phone banking line.
The victim was defrauded out of more than $1.1 million, according to prosecutors.
Juma engaged the services of Kenyan law firm Okatch and Partners Advocates in scamming the Qatari Victim Company, the firm was used to receive the funds from the victim.
Juma claimed to own a company in Kenya Westload Financial Solutions that would provide the loan, while Hushpuppi pretended to be “Malik,” a banker at Wells Fargo in the United States, who was purportedly facilitating the loan payment.
“During this meeting, the Victim Businessperson signed a contract with Westload. The contract stated that the Victim Businessperson was responsible for paying a “consultancy fee” of $225,000 through the law firm Okatch & Partners (“Okatch”), which was located in Kenya. The payment was to be made in two installments—an initial payment of $157,500 and a second payment for $67,500. Westload also provided two initial invoices; one for $157,500 for the first installment and another for $6,900, for purported legal and initial engagement fees.” Court paper reads.
On around December 6 and 7, 2019, the Victim Businessperson wired approximately USD $150,000 to Okatch in four transactions court papers show.
Then, on February 4, 2020, Juma told the Victim Businessperson to send money to Okatch, in Kenya. Between approximately February 5 and 10, 2020, the Victim Businessperson sent $299,983.58 to the bank account of Okatch in seven separate transactions.
Court papers strongly indicate that the law firm facilitated the scamming and Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) is coming for it Akasha brother’s style.
Okatch was in the news a few days ago when he slapped Silas Jakakimba when they had a disagreement.
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