Colorado: Nigerian Romance Scammer Arrested in Georgia

Twenty-six year-old Kelly Itive was arrested in January in Cobb County, Georgia for stealing $78,000 from two El Paso County (CO) women!

Kelly Itive

He was in the US on a STUDENT VISA.

The story was sent to me by reader Rachel who penned this in an attached note: “Deport Him Now!”

You might want to see my February story about Nigerian so-called “romance” scams here.

Apparently they are skilled actors who pose as white men on-line.

Continue reading “Colorado: Nigerian Romance Scammer Arrested in Georgia”

Be Aware of the Top Ten Scams that Steal from Granny

CNBC recently published a list of the Top Ten Scams that are perpetrated against seniors in the US.

Scams cheat older Americans out of almost $3 billion a year. Here’s what to watch for

Seniors lose an estimated $2.9 billion annually from financial exploitation, according to the Senate Special Committee on Aging.

Screenshot (888)

Impersonating the IRS was the No. 1 scam targeting seniors in 2018.

More than 1,500 seniors across the country contacted the committee’s fraud hotline in 2018; however, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said in recent testimony that only 1 in every 24 cases of elder exploitation gets reported.

“Despite that under-reporting, statistically one in every 10 Americans age 65 or older who lives at home will become a victim of abuse,” he wrote.

Here are the top 10 scams targeting seniors last year, according to the Senate aging committee’s 2019 Fraud Book:

For a description of each of the ten, go back to CNBC or the Fraud Book mentioned above.

1. IRS impersonators
2. Robocalls
3. Sweepstakes scam/Jamaican lottery scam
4. Computer tech support fraud
5. Elder financial abuse
6. Grandparent scams
7. Romance frauds
8. Fake Social Security calls
9. Lawsuit or arrest threats
10. Identity theft

 
Identity thieves not only drain bank accounts and charge credit cards, but they also defraud the government and taxpayers by using stolen personal information to submit fraudulent billings to Medicare and Medicaid.

The Senate aging committee recommends that victims place a fraud alert, report identity theft or file a police report if a scam is suspected.

Sit down with elderly relatives and explain the kinds of frauds that they might experience and then take time and report fraud or suspected fraud.

Almost a day doesn’t go by that I don’t get some call about “free” knee braces and such!  How about you?

Targeting the Lonely: Nigerian-based Scammers

pink computer
Cute image, sad stories!  https://www.axios.com/scarlet-widow-anatomy-of-a-romance-scam-ring-25b6a993-8478-4e72-912e-d21e5ae4b9b4.html

I know it’s hard to believe that there are so many lonely men and women, especially seniors, who fall for on-line dating site scams and actually send money—millions of dollars annually—to people they think they are in love with, but have never met.

This story from Axios is about “Scarlet Widow” a Nigerian-headquartered fraud network,

Scarlet Widow: Anatomy of a romance-scam ring

A Nigeria-based romance-scam outfit, dubbed Scarlet Widow in a new report, has been bilking lonelyhearts of their savings since 2015.

Why it matters: In the abstract, people often dismiss email scams as a punchline they are somehow above. In truth, they are a billion-dollar crime paradigm preying on the gullible and savvy alike. And romance scams have particularly tragic dimensions.

Apparently the Nigerians are great actors in addition to being clever scammers.

The moniker “Nigerian scam” is more than a nickname. Agari’s research found the Scarlet Widow group, like 90% of email scams, actually does originate in Nigeria.

Go here for more.

But the romance scammers don’t just live in Nigeria.

 

Black Axe victim
Canadian victim of romance scammers connected to Nigerian Black Axe group. Story at The Globe and Mail    https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/shadowy-black-axe-group-leaves-trail-of-tattered-lives/article27244946/

 

Here is a story by reporter Anna Marie Bolton about one such Nigerian scammer (affiliated with Black Axe) from Canada who had been living in Garland, Texas and was found guilty late last year of cheating older lonely women out of life savings.

Florida Jury Finds Nigerian ‘Axemen’ Guilty of Scamming Elderly Women for Millions

While all eyes are on Florida for the recount of the Senate election, a federal jury in Tampa has found Okechuwku “Desmond” Amadi, a Canadian who had been living in Garland, Texas guilty of conspiracy and money laundering. He was caught operating a complex fraud scheme from Garland, via Florida, Canada and Nigeria, that preyed on elderly and divorced women.

The announcement from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Middle District of Florida came Thursday, stating that Amadi faces 60 years in federal prison.

The feds nabbed Amadi in Sept. 2017 as he returned on a flight to JFK International Airport from Nigeria.

More here.

Be sure to keep an eye on granny!  Or grandpa! Or some other lonely family member so that they don’t fall prey to scammers like these!