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2 Nigerian scammers living in the U.S. jailed for conning women out of $14 million in cyber romance schemes

By Tanya Clark 5:55 AM December 1, 2017
Businessman (illustration)

Two men from Nigeria moved to the United States, where they managed to get vulnerable women to send them millions of dollars.

Now, the two men and a third accomplice, who is a U.S. citizen, were jailed for their crimes.

The two Nigerian men and the U.S. citizen, who authorities referred to as a “victim-turned-criminal,” were jailed for their international romance and cyber fraud schemes that defrauded victims from the United States and Canada, according to immigration officials.

36-year-old Richard Ugbah, a Nigerian citizen who lived in Atlanta, Georgia, was sentenced to 12 years in federal prison for wire fraud.

Ugbah was also ordered to forfeit a Mercedes Benz and two bank accounts.

Ugbah was also found guilty of a business email compromise (BEC) scheme, in which he targeted about 100 victims online.

In that scam, Ugbah posed as a financial advisor named “David Sanders” and obtained the victims’ bank account information and instructed those victims to forward the money to other accounts controlled by the scammers.

In that case, he was also sentenced to 12 years in prison. He will serve the sentences concurrently.

Michael Adegoke, 34, a Nigerian citizen living in Chicago, Illinois, was also sentenced to 12 years in federal prison for conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

Jon Whipple, 60, from St. Petersburg, Florida, who was initially a victim of a similar romance fraud scheme, later participated in the scheme by disseminating counterfeit checks.

Whipple was sentenced to serve 5 years probation.