Nigerian National Admits Role in Business E-Mail Compromise Scheme
John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, and Patricia M. Ferrick, Special Agent in Charge of the New Haven Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, announced that ADEYEMI ODUFUYE, also known as “Micky,” “Micky Bricks,” “Yemi,” “GMB,” “Bawz,” and “Jefe,” 31, a citizen of Nigeria, pleaded guilty today before Chief U.S. District Judge Janet C. Hall in New Haven to fraud and identity theft offenses stemming from a business e-mail compromise scheme.
According to court documents and statements made in court, the FBI has been investigating a business compromise scheme in which ODUFUYE and others targeted CEOs, CFOs, controllers and others at U.S. businesses using sophisticated cyber techniques to defraud the businesses of millions of dollars. As part of this scheme, in late 2015, ODUFUYE and others sent or caused to be sent dozens of e-mails to the controller of a company in Torrington, Connecticut. In the e-mails, ODUFUYE posed at the real CEO of the victim company and instructed the controller to send multiple wire transfers exceeding a total of $1 million from the company’s accounts to various individuals and purported entities. The company then sent five wire transfers totaling more than $500,000 to accounts in Virginia, Florida, Washington, D.C., and Hong Kong.
The investigation revealed that ODUFUYE and others controlled multiple e-mail and social media accounts used in the scheme and, in certain instances, sent e-mails and attachments containing malware to the intended recipients.
The investigation further revealed that ODUFUYE and others also targeted a company headquartered in Waterbury, Connecticut, as part of this scheme.
To date, the FBI has identified 36 wire confirmations in e-mail accounts utilized by ODUFUYE and others from September 2015 to May 2016, totaling more than $1.6 million. This figure does not include the more than $500,000 in wire transfers from the victim company in Connecticut.
ODUFUYE pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud, which carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years, and one count of aggravated identity theft, which carries a mandatory consecutive term of imprisonment of at least two years. Chief Judge Hall scheduled sentencing for March 28, 2018.
On December 19, 2016, ODUFUYE was arrested in the United Kingdom where he was a student at Sheffield Hallam University in Sheffield, England. He was extradited from the U.K. to the U.S. and is detained.
This matter is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Connecticut Cyber Task Force. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney David T. Huang.
U.S. Attorney Durham thanked the Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs, the United Kingdom’s National Crime Agency, and the United Kingdom’s Metropolitan Police for their assistance in this case.
To contact the Connecticut Cyber Task Force, please call the FBI in New Haven at 203-777-6311.