A Nigerian man has been detained by the Special Task Force in Uttar Pradesh, India, on suspicion of defrauding a 64-year-old retired aeronautics engineer of N131 million by pretending to be a German woman online.
On September 15, 2022, Jerome Balla, aka Sunday Dumka, 34, the accused, was apprehended in Delhi. From his possession, police seized six mobile phones, three SIM cards, a Nigerian voter ID card, a Mastercard, and a passport photocopy.
According to STF, the accused is a part of a gang that engages in online fraud, especially fooling older males into friendship by posing as women. In order to get money from the victim, a resident of Alambagh, Lucknow, the accused pretended to be a woman on his social media page and told her she was sending him gifts for her birthday.
The man reported it to the cyber police. According to ASP, STF, Vishal Vikram Singh, the suspect made a false Facebook profile posing as Analisa Thompson of Berlin and made friends with the victim there.
Last year, the suspect contacted the victim with a message asking for his address because “she” wanted to give the woman a gift for her birthday.
“A few days later, I got a call from a man regarding a parcel and was asked to deposit Rs 20,000 as income tax. I did the payment.
A few days later I got another call, this time from a woman, and was asked to deposit Rs 52,000 as charges/tax for the gift which was 60,000 in Great Britain currency. Since the money was huge, I did not doubt and deposited this amount also,” he said.
Later, he was instructed to transfer the final amount of Rs. 3.98 lakh, which was calculated as fees for receiving the gift and foreign currency. He said that money was taken under the guise of RBI charges or fees.
He claimed that these emails made him wary, and when he went to the RBI to ask about them, they informed him that he had been duped.