A Nigerian man identified as Uche Raymond Okoye, has been arrested and charged to a court by the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) in Guyana, for allegedly defrauding Guyanese women of over $6m.
The suspect who is part of an international criminal network in which women are befriended on Facebook and promised lavish gifts and jewelry, was arraigned on Thursday on charges of obtaining money by false pretense, according to a SOCU prosecutor.
Okoye, also known as Uche Parker, appeared at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts, where he was slammed with 11 charges and is not required to enter a plea after the charges were read to him by Magistrate Leron Daly.
According to the charges, between October and November 2020, at Georgetown, with intent to defraud, Okoye had obtained $6,059,900 from one of his victims, Suruj Dei Balkaran, and $50,000 from another woman by falsely claiming that he had packages intended for them.
The SOCU prosecutor told the court that Okoye had allegedly solicited the women’s funds after he befriended them on Facebook under an alias name of Uche Parker.
During that time, he had informed his victims about the supposed packages containing the latest gadgets and electronic devices. Okoye reportedly told the women that he would be sending the items and that they would need to contact a representative who would clear the packages and deliver to them.
“The representative Okoye referred to was himself but he made the women believe it was a delivery company,” the SOCU prosecutor said.
According to the prosecutor, the Nigerian national sent the women a Whatsapp number to be contacted about the transactions.
“After the women paid the monies for the delivery of the packages, and anytime they called to find out when they will be delivered, the suspect would tell them there was an unexpected delay and that he was instructed to send more cash via bank transfers and Western Union. The women would have no option but to send more money and they did this over 10 times,” the prosecutor added.
It was gathered that last November, Okoye had appeared at a city court and pleaded not guilty to two counts of obtaining money by false pretense, one count of demanding money by menace, and one count of illegal entry into Guyana.
According to the Guyana Police Force, Okoye entered Guyana from Brazil without presenting himself to the nearest immigration officer.
The police said that he is part of a criminal network operating in Guyana, which has links to the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Peru, Brazil, Venezuela, Argentina, Paraguay, and other countries.
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