Scammers utilizing online internet dating sites to dupe ladies away from vast amounts.


OKLAHOMA CITY — FBI agents are making the initial arrests within their research of a internet dating scam who has duped victims away from huge amount of money.

The scam utilized internet dating sites like ChristianMingle, Match and OurTime to befriend older females.

A widow from Oklahoma City destroyed significantly more than $1 million year that is last the scam to a guy whom pretended to be always a economic adviser originally from Manchester, England, an FBI agent reported in a court affidavit. Another woman destroyed $1.1 million.

A target in sc destroyed $345,000, and a target in Michigan destroyed $215,000.

Two Houston residents, Ken Ejimofor Ezeah, 33, and Akunna Baiyina Ejiofor, 31, had been charged Wednesday in Oklahoma City court that is federal cable fraudulence and conspiracy to commit cable fraudulence for his or her so-called functions within the scam.

They’ve been being held in Houston, where these people were arrested.

Ejiofor admitted participation into the scam, saying she setup the accounts that are fake online dating sites for Ezeah, FBI Special Agent David Tyus reported in a court affidavit.

She stated she only participated “to your degree she could earn money for lease,” the representative published.

“Ezeah or an acquaintance of their called Franklin would ask her to talk with victims once they required a voice that is female” the representative penned Wednesday. “She claimed that she knew that Franklin utilized the persona Edward Peter Duffey whenever working with victims. She claimed that she have been in the phone with a target because recently as yesterday.”

The scam targeted women across america. Detectives discovered the guy posing as Duffey had plants delivered a year ago to ladies in Oklahoma City, Colorado, Georgia, sc, Nevada and Texas.

The FBI agent reported after befriending women online, “Duffey” would text, email and sometimes speak to them by phone, using a thick British accent. “Duffey” eventually would show love for the target, turn the communicate with funds, alert the prospective her assets were unsafe and gives to handle the cash on her.

The man would say he was friends with Mary Jo White, the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission as part of the scam. Then a lady posing as White would phone the prospective and urge her to follow along with “Duffey’s” advice.

A widow from Colorado, whom knew “Duffey” had been a fraudulence, played along. She told the FBI that “Duffey” stated he had been rich together with domiciles in Switzerland and Florida, in addition to personal jets and that he initially ended up being from Manchester.

She stated the lady whom posed while the SEC president sounded really young, in line with the FBI affidavit. The widow stated she “had heard the White that is real speak had been particular it was maybe perhaps not her.”

The target from Oklahoma City, identified into the FBI affidavit as Pamela Bale, told the FBI she came across “Duffey” on ChristianMingle March that is last and hit it down.”

He stated he had been 65 and ended up being sticking to a close friend in Houston. He additionally reported he had been from Manchester together with been a monetary adviser for 35 years.

“After roughly 2 to 3 months of interacting, Duffey told Bale he had been deeply in love with her. Duffey had plants brought to Bale for an occasions that are few” in line with the affidavit.

Bale told the FBI that “Duffey” warned her that the business where she had spent her funds that are own under research because of the SEC, in which he encouraged her to withdraw the funds and allow him spend it, based on the affidavit.

A girl purporting become White through the SEC then called Bale and in addition encouraged her to withdraw her funds, the FBI agent reported. The caller stated she could maybe maybe not hold from the SEC research considerably longer.

“After much prayer,” Bale wired $500,000 and $501,000 on might 14 to a banking account in London for “Duffey” to take a position, the FBI agent reported. “After these cable transfers had been made, ‘Duffey’ ceased interacting with Bale.”

The target in Michigan, Virginia Phillips, told the FBI she came across “Duffey” a year ago on talkmatch. She stated he utilized the display screen title “Heartofgold3905” and stated to become a pilot that is retired Sunday college instructor located in Fort Worth, Texas.

The FBI has information Ezeah can be from Switzerland. Agents are also investigating the involvement that is suspected of Houston resident, Anthony Izuchkwu Benson, 33, whom arrived from Switzerland in September.

The documents offer no information that is further the guy defined as Franklin, except that he’s a roomie of Benson.

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