Nigerian man gets 87 months jail in US over $1.89m fraud
A 36-year-old Nigerian, Jabin Godspower Okpako, has been convicted by a United States Chief Judge, Matthew Brann for laundering approximately $1.89 million.
He was sentenced to 87 months imprisonment on Tuesday.
Okpako and his 54-year-old wife, Christin Bradley of Sayre, Pennsylvania, were arraigned for money laundering.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) while Assistant U.S. Attorney George Rocktashel prosecuted the case.
According to the prosecutor, the convict and his wife received approximately $1,898,046 million proceeds from a mail and wire fraud scheme, laundered the funds through numerous bank and wire transactions in multiple states and transferred it out of the United States to three separate bank accounts in Nigeria.
The money was taken from female victims aged 55 to 85 located online.
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The couple fraudulently induced the victims to send and transmit funds for various fictitious reasons and purposes, after successfully cultivating online relationships with them.
According to the United States Attorney John Gurganus, the couple fraudulently induced the victims to provide funds for these fictitious reasons including "to assist a worker in Alaska who fell from a tower, to purchase an apartment in Washington, D.C., to assist the United Nations, to repair machinery and equipment on an oil drilling rig, to pay for medicine, to recover a $6 million inheritance, and to make an investment in gold."
Okpako's wife, Bradley pleaded guilty on March 31, 2021, to conspiracy to commit money laundering through the mail and wire fraud and is awaiting sentencing.
In his ruling, Chief Judge Brann noted that Okpako and his wife continued to conduct money laundering transfers despite receiving a warning letter from the FBI.
The Chief Judge, in spite of that, ordered Okpako to make restitution in the amount of $440,950 to victims and forfeit proceeds of the criminal activity.
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