Three Nigerians become first in Irish history to be charged over ‘romance fraud’ scam


Three Nigerian men have become the first persons in the state’s history to be charged over an alleged ‘romance fraud’ scam. The trio was arrested by the Garda National Economic Crime Bureau in Dublin, Navan and Drogheda.

Rasak Sanni Sadu, Omawale Olamide Owalabi, and Samson Ajayi, all from Nigeria and aged between 29 and 32, were arrested at the weekend as part of Operation Engulf.

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They were quizzed before being brought to Dublin District Court and charged with a series of suspected fraud offences.

The alleged offences are believed to have been committed between October 2019 and April this year. Sadu has been charged with the theft of €35,000 and two counts of money laundering.

One of the money laundering charges relates to the alleged conversion of the stolen property into a €25,000 Rolex watch. The other two defendants have each been charged with three counts of money laundering.

The major probe — which also involves the Garda National Cyber Crime Bureau — was launched in the summer after a complaint was made to cops by a Dublin woman.

The woman alleges she spent cash on an investment project in the Middle East that never existed after receiving correspondence on the dating website Plenty of Fish last year from a man claiming to be a US oil rig worker.

Meanwhile, The police in Delhi, India has arrested an alleged interstate Nigerian drug peddler and seized 250 grams of cocaine from his possession at New Delhi Railway Station.

According to the police, the accused, Victor Kaine, 35, was arrested on Saturday by a police team on patrolling duty at New Delhi Railway Station.

It was gathered that the police noticed the accused standing in suspicious condition near Taxi Stand. On sighting the police, he allegedly took to his heels, but the team chased and apprehended him.

On asking to produce identity credentials and passport, he showed the photocopy of his visa which had expired in the month of August 2020.

The police searched his bag and found a pouch containing powder, which was later confirmed to be cocaine weighing 250 grams.

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