Ahead of the Yuletide, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has launched total war on online fraudsters otherwise known as ‘Yahoo Boys’, The PUNCH has learnt.
The operation codenamed ‘Cyber Storm’, will involve EFCC operatives monitoring suspicious transactions especially by youths who cannot explain their source of wealth.
The commission will also deploy its agents in nightclubs and concerts where youths usually go to “pop” expensive champagne. The anti-graft agency will also be monitoring social media accounts of suspected fraudsters who usually show off their expensive cars and houses.
Confirming the development, the Spokesman for the EFCC, Mr. Tony Orilade, said, “The chairman, Ibrahim Magu, has constituted a Special Task Force on Internet Fraud.
“The task force, is made up of personnel from ICT, Public Affairs, Operations and Special Control Unit against Money Laundering.”
As part of the operation, the EFCC has already arrested over 50 suspected online fraudsters in the last 10 days in Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt and Ibadan.
An EFCC operative said, “We have declared a total war on Yahoo boys who have done nothing but given Nigeria a bad name home and abroad. We know their methods of operation. Be assured that in the coming days we will make more arrests.
“Those who live honest lives will not be touched.”
Meanwhile, the EFCC has arrested three suspected internet fraudsters, at No 24, 1st Avenue, Fort Royal Estate, Airport Road, Abuja.
The suspects are; Marvin Nwankwo, Prince Ojenike and Jude Olatekobowale. They allegedly created a Facebook account with the following names: Rodney David; David Rodgers and Carlos David, respectively.
The EFCC said in a statement by its acting Spokesman, Mr. Tony Orilade, that arrest was based on intelligence report that the suspects turned the said residence into their office, using laptops, phone and other gadgets to defraud innocent people, including foreigners, of their hard earned money and other valuables.
The statement added, “The intelligence further revealed that the suspects aged between 22 to 30 years, used the proceeds of their crimes to acquire different properties such as cars which include a GLK Mercedes Benz SUV, a Toyota Corolla, amongst others.
“On receipt of the intelligence report, operatives of the EFCC swung into action and mounted surveillance on the said address, to monitor the activities of the suspects.
“After thorough investigations, the suspects were arrested and items, which included several laptops of different makes, very expensive mobile phones, modems, many SIM cards, amongst others were recovered.”