Nigerian entrepreneur, Obinwanne Okeke, better known as Invictus Obi has received a 10-year jail term for his involvement in an internet fraud worth $11 million.
Invictus Obi was sentenced to prison by Chief District Judge of the United State District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Rebecca Smith on Tuesday.
According to Judge Smith, the 33-year-old Nigerian national was jailed for involvement in a computer-based intrusion fraud scheme that caused approximately $11m in known losses to his victims.
“Through subterfuge and impersonation, Obinwanne Okeke engaged in a multi-year global business email and computer hacking scheme that caused a staggering $11 million in losses to his victims,” said Raj Parekh, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia.
“Today’s sentence further demonstrates EDVA’s and FBI’s worldwide reach in vigorously pursuing justice on behalf of American victims and others and holding international cybercriminals accountable, no matter where they commit their crimes.”
Recall that Invictus was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) at Dulles International Airport while leaving the US over $11 million internet fraud in 2019.
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According to court documents, Okeke operated a group of companies known as the Invictus Group based in Nigeria and elsewhere.
As part of the scheme, Okeke and others engaged in an email compromise scheme targeting Unatrac Holding Limited, the export sales office for Caterpillar heavy industrial and farm equipment.
In April 2018, a Unatrac executive fell prey to a phishing email that allowed conspirators to capture login credentials. The conspirators sent fraudulent wire transfer requests and attached fake invoices.
Okeke participated in the effort to victimize Unatrac through fraudulent wire transfers totalling nearly $11 million, funds which were transferred overseas.
Additionally, Okeke engaged in other forms of cyber fraud, including sending phishing emails to capture email credentials, creating fraudulent web pages, and causing other losses to numerous victims.
“The FBI will not allow cybercriminals free reign in the digital world to prey on U.S. companies,” said Brian Dugan, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Field Office.
He added, “This sentencing demonstrates the FBI’s commitment to working with our partners at the Department of Justice and our foreign counterparts to locate cybercriminals across the globe and bring them to the United States to be held accountable.”
Okeke, who was an inspiration to many youths in Nigeria, was listed on the Forbes 30 under 30 categories for his business exploits and wealth.