Foreign investor loses $7.99m in oil scam

17 September 2014, Lagos – LAGOS — The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, yesterday said it arrested two suspected fraudsters who allegedly defrauded a foreign investor of $7.99 million through a non-existent oil deal .

Spokesman for the commission, Wilson Uwujaren, who gave the identities of the suspects as Victor Uwadiale and Captain Nnaji Everest, said they were arrested separately by the operatives in Festac area and another part of the state.

EFCC-operatives-at-workUwujaren described Uadiale as the principal suspect and arrow head of an international syndicate, which specialised in defrauding international businessmen seeking investment opportunities in Nigeria.

Uwujaren further said: “Uwadiale allegedly invited the investor, a businessman from somewhere in the Middle East, to invest in the flourishing oil sector in Nigeria.

“Using a pseudo name, Victor Emeka, he made the investor to visit Nigeria and received him at the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja and thereafter flew him in a helicopter to a destination where he reportedly met a certain Mr. Grant, a member of the syndicate, who assured him of the credibility of the business arrangement.

“Convinced that Uwadiale was real and the business promising, the investor started paying money in foreign currency into Uadiale’s offshore accounts where it was laundered into various bank accounts around the globe.

“A sum of $ 1.292 million was traced to a Barclay’s Bank in the United Kingdom, account belonging to Captain Nnaji Everest, a member of Uwadiale’s syndicate.

“The sum of N1. 6 million, N1.2 million, £894.79 and $275.30 were traced to Uwadiale’s accounts with one of the new generation banks in Nigeria and another £391.93 to another local bank.”

Uwujaren added also that during investigation, Uwadiale denied meeting or transacting any business with the foreign investor. He was, however, nailed by a business associate of the investor who identified him as the fraudster and led operatives of the EFCC to the private residence of Uwadiale in Festac Town, Lagos.
*Ifeanyi Okolie – Vanguard

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