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EFCC: Church founder wanted by FBI over alleged $182k fraud arrested in Enugu

EFCC: Church founder wanted by FBI over alleged $182k fraud arrested in Enugu
March 17
23:03 2022

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) says its operatives have arrested Kelechi Vitalis Anozie, identified as the founder of Praying City Church in Owerri, Imo, over his alleged involvement in $182,800 wire fraud.

In 2019, TheCable had reported that Anozie and some Nigerians appeared on the list of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for alleged cyber crime and money laundering.

Nick Hanna, the then US attorney, had said the fraud cases involving Anozie and other Nigerian suspects constitute some of the largest cases in US history.

In a statement on Thursday, the EFCC said the church founder was arrested in Enugu on March 10.


“Operatives of the Enugu Zonal Command of the EFCC, have arrested Kelechi Vitalis Anozie, a suspect on the watch list of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation, FBI,” the statement reads.

“He was arrested on March 10, 2022, following credible intelligence linking him to alleged conspiracy, wire fraud and money laundering.

“Anozie and four other suspects: Valentine Iro, Ekene Ekechukwu (alias Ogedi Power), Bright Azubuike (alias Bright Bauer Azubuike) and Ifeanyi Junior, are alleged to have defrauded one F.F who lives in Illinois, United States, the sum of $135,800 US Dollars and another $47,000.”


Meanwhile, the development comes days after the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) announced that it arrested Ugochukwu Ekwem, general overseer of Christ Living Hope Church, for alleged drug trafficking.

This story is published in partnership with Report for the World, a global service program that supports local public interest journalism.


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