EFCC, Italian Police Smash International 419 Ring, Arrest Three

EFCCC - elombah

Three fugitive members of an international criminal gang have been arrested in Lagos by a combined team of operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and the Italian National Police.

According to a statement issued on Thursday by EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, the suspects, only identified by the initials K.C., O.O. and S.E., were arrested in Lagos in an operation that began in June across Europe and Africa.

June 9, 2015, 4.00 am: 750 police officers from the Italian, Spanish, Polish, English, Belgian, Georgian, Turkish and Cameroonian police, with the support of Europol and Interpol, and with the coordination of Eurojust, knock on the doors of 62 individuals suspected of being members of a criminal organization, mainly from Nigeria and Cameroon, responsible for a huge number of frauds committed against small and medium-sized enterprises across the world,” the statement read.

The gang, the anti-graft agency said, was devoted to stealing money from unsuspecting businesses through a type of hacking referred to as “man-in-the-middle” which uses sophisticated stealth equipment.



    This hacking enabled members of the criminal group to access “e-mail boxes of Italian and foreign companies through hacking and social engineering techniques that enabled the criminals to meddle in trade relations between the companies, unbeknownst to them, and finally diverting their mutual payments onto bank accounts belonging to the organization.”

    The raids in June led to the arrest of 62 people, with 40, 000 Euros, 30 smart phones, 10 tablets, and 15 computers seized.

    The latest arrests by the EFCC, Wilson said, were made possible by intelligence provided by the Postal and Communications Police in Italy. Bank documents, phones and other gadgets were recovered.

    He added that EFCC have also started an independent investigation to establish a possible connection between the criminal syndicate and similar groups in South Africa, Ghana, Gambia, China, UAE, Kenya and Spain.


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