Cameroon Man Charged with Bank Fraud and Wire Fraud
URBANA, Ill. – A citizen of Cameroon, Lovette Namatinga, was arrested on Oct. 7 at Washington Dulles International Airport by FDIC Office of Inspector General agents. Namatinga, who resides in Owings Mills, Maryland, was indicted by a Grand Jury on Oct. 1 on charges he defrauded a Kankakee County bank. He will appear for arraignment in Urbana, Illinois once he is transported to the Central District of Illinois by the U.S. Marshals Service.
The indictment alleges that from about Feb. 26, 2019 and continuing until about April 8, 2019, Namatinga devised a scheme to defraud Municipal Trust and Savings Bank (“MTSB”), a financial institution located in Kankakee County, Illinois, in which MTSB was fraudulently induced by electronic mails to mail four checks in large dollar amounts made payable to Keiko San Products (“Keiko”). The messages in the electronic mails falsely represented that the secretary of one of MTSB’s customers requested that the checks be mailed to Keiko, when in reality, the loan customer did not make this request.
Namatinga is the registered agent for Keiko, and the four checks were mailed to his home address. Once the checks were deposited into Keiko bank accounts, Namatinga transferred money from those accounts to his personal account or withdrew cash from those accounts. The loss to MTSB was approximately $141,000.
If convicted of bank fraud, each count carries a penalty of up to 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $1,000,000. If convicted of the offense of wire fraud, each count carries a penalty of up to 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000.
The charges are the result of an investigation by the FDIC Office of Inspector General. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Meredith Reiter.
Members of the public are reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation; the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.