- Magu says EFCC is cooperating with FBI to fish out suspects.
- Dabiri says report embarrassing.
Ibrahim Magu, the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has declared the agency will fish out some of the 77 Nigerian suspects involved in massive wire fraud schemes in the United States.
Recall that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) recently released names of 77 suspected internet fraudsters as part of its clampdown on fraudsters in the country.
Ther anti-corruption czar who said that the number of Nigerian suspects could be more than 77 going by the joint operation of the EFCC and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the past few months pointed that the EFCC is on the watch-out and will not leave any stone unturned.
While noting that the agency has been cooperating with FBI on cybercrimes, Magu, who opened up while receiving the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Diaspora Commission, Mrs. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, said the EFCC will fully cooperate with FBI on the matter as well.
A 252-count federal grand jury unsealed on Thursday charged 80 suspects, out of which 77 are Nigerian nationals allegedly participating in a massive conspiracy to steal millions of dollars through a variety of fraud schemes.
It accused the 77 Nigerians of laundering the funds through a Los Angeles-based money laundering network as uncovered by the FBI.
This was discovered after law enforcement authorities, led by the FBI, arrested 14 defendants across the United States with 11 of those arrests taking place in the Los Angeles region.
Speaking on the development, Magu said there will be no hiding place for anyone no matter how highly placed.
“We’ll cooperate with other stakeholders and other law enforcement agencies in this country and outside the country like the FBI and the NCA and other law enforcement agencies in the neigbouring countries to make sure we deal with this issue.”
On her part, Abike Dabiri-Erewa said the situation was embarrassing adding that Nigeria is not a country of 419 people.
“We have 77 Nigerians allegedly being involved in cybercrime in one fell swoop. We’ve stressed that these Nigerians are innocent until proven guilty. It is a court indictment, they will have to go to court, they have to be tried but we are demanding fair trial for them and good consular services for them.
“And we really need to affirm that they are not all Nigerians. But it is a very embarrassing situation to have out of 80 people (suspects) 77 from Nigeria allegedly. Just last week, there was a cybercrime case with a young Nigerian too. “