Alex Sualim, a Nigerian electrical engineer living in Canada, was sentenced Monday to more than 12 years in a U.S. prison and ordered to pay $13 million in restitution for his role in an internet fraud scheme.
Between 2009 and 2013, Sualim was part of a group that claimed to be a Canadian firm looking for a distributor to purchase a Chinese product, according to the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ). The criminals sent out spam emails targeting American companies. When victims responded, the criminals would initially offer to cover all the cost and later swindle victims into paying for phony merchandise.
“The defendant operated a sophisticated, international fraud scheme that spanned four continents and swindled millions of dollars from more than a dozen victims,” IRS-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI) Special Agent in Charge Ismael Nevarez Jr said in the DoJ release.