2 Nigerians charged over alleged roles in scams

Two men were taken to court yesterday over their alleged roles in transnational Internet love scams committed between 2017 and last year.

In a statement on Monday evening, the Singapore Police Force (SPF) said this was the first time that overseas-based suspects involved in the scams were arrested and sent to Singapore for prosecution.

Nigerians Oladayo Opeyemi Awolola, 34, and Gbolahan Ayobami Awolola, 37, were each charged with one count of abetting others to receive stolen property.

Court documents did not state if they are related to each other.

The pair, said to be part of an African syndicate, allegedly recruited two Singaporean women as money mules to receive criminal proceeds linked to the love scams.

The women allegedly received at least $85,700 from victims in Singapore before handing the cash to the syndicate members in Malaysia.

According to court documents, Oladayo Opeyemi Awolola allegedly engaged in a conspiracy with a woman identified as Suhaili Suparjo.

 
 

On Jan 18 last year, Ms Suhaili is said to have received $46,500 from one Peng Guie, and she had reason to believe that the money was stolen property. Court documents did not reveal details about Ms Suhaili.

Gbolahan Ayobami Awolola is said to have committed a similar offence in November 2017 when he allegedly engaged in a conspiracy with a woman identified as Norhafizah Samsudin.

Ms Norhafizah, whose details were also not revealed in court documents, allegedly received $32,900 in her bank account, and she had reason to believe that the money was stolen property.

In Monday's statement, the SPF said investigators from Singapore's Commercial Affairs Departmentconducted a joint investigation with the Commercial Crime Investigation Department of the Royal Malaysia Police and established the identities of the two Nigerians.

Malaysian police arrested the two men in Kuala Lumpur on April 16 and they were brought to Singapore on Monday.

The two Nigerians are now remanded at Central Police Division and will be back in court next Tuesday.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 15, 2019, with the headline '2 Nigerians charged over alleged roles in scams'. Print Edition | Subscribe