Application security, Threat Management

Nigerian man pleads guilty to BEC scams, awaits sentencing

A Nigerian man pleaded guilty Wednesday in a Manhattan Federal Court to helping perpetuate business email compromise (BEC) scams aimed at netting millions of dollars.

“Onyekachi Emmanuel Opara ran a global email scam business that victimized thousands of people out of millions of dollars,” Geoffrey S. Berman, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, said in a Justice Department release. “And even though he operated his so-called ‘business' in a country halfway around the world, our Office's global reach ensures that he will serve time in the United States for his crimes.”        

Opara and co-conspirator David Chukwuneke Adindu, along with others, ran BEC scams between 2014 to 2016, sending out fraudulent emails to employees working for numerous companies that purported to be from supervisors or third-party vendors and directing would-be victims to transfer funds to certain bank accounts, according to the release.

The 29-year-old Opara, was arrested in South Africa in December of 2016 then extradited to the U.S. in December 2016. He pleaded guilty to a single count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud as well as one count of wire fraud. He is due to be sentenced on July 11.

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