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EFCC hands over recovered $22k from convicted scammer to FBI

EFCC returns recovered money EFCC returns recovered money

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) says it has handed over $22,000 recovered from Hakeem Olanrewaju, a convicted internet fraudster, to the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI).

In a statement on Saturday, the EFCC said the money was handed over to the FBI in Lagos, as the victim, who was defrauded, lives in the US.

In August 2023, Nicholas Oweibo, the judge of the federal high court in Ikoyi, sentenced Olanrewaju to two years imprisonment for identity theft and impersonation.

The judge also ordered that the money recovered from him be restituted to his victim.

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Speaking during the handover ceremony in Lagos on Friday, Michael Wetkas, acting director of the Lagos zonal command of the EFCC, said the commission remains dedicated to combating crimes and restoring sanity to the nation.

“We are delighted to be handing over this proceeds of crime today,” Wetkas said, adding that “the EFCC is willing and always ready to do more”.

Charles Smith, FBI legal attaché in Nigeria, thanked the EFCC for facilitating the recovery of the money.

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“This type of crime cripples businesses in the US, and for them to recover the money within one to two years gives hope to the affected companies and brings some level of justice, even if not all subjects have been identified,” Smith said.

“We hope our relationship continues and fosters a more cohesive partnership between the two agencies.”

Smith added that the FBI is willing to support the investigation in any way possible.

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