A 23-year-old Nigerian student, Oyindamola Akinrinola, has been convicted for her role in fraud schemes that targeted victims across the United States.
The college student of Lawrence, Kansas, pleaded guilty in federal court for receiving and transferring illicit funds on commission on behalf of a Nigerian co-conspirator.
The US Attorney Stephen McAllister, who announced her conviction on Monday night, said Akinrinola will now face time in federal prison for her crime.
“Akinrinola and her co-conspirator in Nigeria victimized individuals, several elderly, through a variety of online scams,” McAllister said.
Akinrinola’s co-conspirator in Nigeria orchestrated several scams, such as tricking victims into believing they were eligible for fictitious awards or establishing purported (but false) romantic relationships with victims and exploiting their affections
The co-conspirator in Nigeria was said to have directed the victims to send money to Akinrinola, who was a college student in Kansas.
She received funds from the scam victims—in amounts ranging from hundreds of dollars to as much $20,000—via wire transfers, money orders, financial applications, Wal-Mart money grams, Western Union, the United States Postal Service, and various other means.
According to the statement, Akinrinola kept a portion for herself as her reward and sent the bulk of the funds to her co-conspirator in Nigeria. To do so, she generally used the Sendwave, WorldRemit, or Boss Revolution mobile applications.
“She now faces time in federal prison for her crimes. We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to prioritize the investigation and prosecution of fraud schemes like these, no matter where they originate.
“I also take this conviction as an opportunity to reiterate to all Kansans the vulnerability of our senior citizens to scams and con artists, who prey upon them.
“We must all be vigilant to protect our parents, grandparents, elderly relatives, friends and neighbors from such frauds and fraudsters,” McAllister said.
Akinrinola, who was granted legal permanent residency in the United States in 2018, will be sentenced on June 15, 2021 at 9:00 am.