A convicted Nigerian internet fraudster, Invictus Group CEO, Obinwanne Okeke has forfeited millions of naira to the federal government.
This was confirmed by Justice A.M. Liman of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos on Wednesday when he ruled on the the final forfeiture order of N235.4m against the convicted fraudster.
Liman had on 23 March ordered the interim forfeiture of the money domiciled in First City Monument Bank.
This followed an ex parte application dated 18 December 2019 filed by the Lagos Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
In granting the interim forfeiture order, the Judge ordered the Commission to advertise same in any national newspaper for anyone to show cause why the said money should not be finally forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
Following the publication of the order in a national newspaper, the Commission, on June 2, 2020, filed a Motion on Notice seeking the final forfeiture of the money to the Federal Government.
During the proceedings on November 12, 2020, counsel to the Commission, I. Sulaiman, urged the court to grant his prayers for final forfeiture of the money, which is reasonably suspected to be proceeds of unlawful activities.
In his ruling, Justice Liman granted the applicant’s prayers and also ordered the final forfeiture of the money to the Federal Government.
Okeke, who is the Chief Executive Officer, CEO, Invictus Group, was arrested sometime in August 2019 in the United States of America, USA, and charged with two counts of computer fraud and wire fraud.
He pleaded guilty to the charge in a trial in US District Court in Norfolk Virginia.
His sentencing was initially fixed for 22 October, but was postponed till 16 February 2021.
The 36 year-old scammer faces up to 20 years in jail and $250,000 in fines.
As a scammer, Okeke was involved in business email compromise.
In one of such scams, he defrauded UK based UNATRAC Holding, a subsidiary of American company Caterpillar of $11million via spurious wire transfers.
In June 2018, representatives of Unatrac Holding Limited contacted the FBI.
Okeke was arrested on 6 August 2019, during a visit to the United States.
Before his arrest, Forbes listed him as one of the influential young entrepreneurs in Africa.