For his part in what is said to be computer based intrusion fraud scheme which caused about $11M dollars in losses to his various victims, Mr. Smart alec Obiwanne Okeke of the Invictus Group of Companies fame was sentenced to prison for the next 10 years according to the Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Virginia on Tuesday, February 16, 2021.
Read the full details of his sentence below-
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 16, 2021
Nigerian National Sentenced to Prison for $11 Million Global Fraud Scheme
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – A Nigerian national was sentenced today to 10 years in prison for his involvement in a computer-based intrusion fraud scheme that caused approximately $11 million 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.”
According to court documents, Obinwanne Okeke, 33, operated a group of companies known as the Invictus Group based in Nigeria and elsewhere. From approximately 2015 to 2019, Okeke and others engaged in a conspiracy to conduct various computer-based frauds. The conspirators obtained and compiled the credentials of hundreds of victims, including victims in the Eastern District of Virginia.
As part of the scheme, Okeke and other conspirators 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 totaling nearly $11 million, which was transferred overseas. Additionally, Okeke engaged in other forms of cyberfraud, including sending phishing emails to capture email credentials, creating fraudulent web pages, and causing other losses to numerous victims.
“The FBI will not allow cyber criminals 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. “This sentencing demonstrates the FBI’s commitment to working with our partners at the Department of Justice and our foreign counterparts to locate cyber criminals across the globe and bring them to the United States to be held accountable.”
Raj Parekh, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Brian Dugan, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Field Office, made the announcement after sentencing by Chief U.S. District Judge Rebecca Beach Smith.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian Samuels prosecuted the case.
A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 4:19-cr-84.
With this conviction of Obinwanne Okeke whose Invictus Group spanned investments in oil and gas, agriculture, telecoms, private equity, alternative energy & real estate with footholds in at least 3 African countries namely Nigeria, South Africa and Zambia, the others also picked for similar offences should be rest assured that 10 years incarceration would be their minimum sentences. While the going was good for him, Invictus Obi has he was also known held sway as he fooled everyone to believing that he was a legitimate young genius, who had the midas touch. He especially hoodwinked Forbes into naming him amongst the Forbes Africa 30 under 30 and he had gotten other international awards and recognition too, in fact he was a regular contributor to Forbes.
Born on November 9, 1987 making him 33 going on 34, with the 10 years sentence which may start counting from when he was arrested in 2019 at Dulles International Airport as he was about departing, the 17th child of his father in a polygamous home, would most likely come out just as he would clock 40 or 41, meaning he still has the opportunity to better himself as a reformed person when he is released if he wants.
Some are of the opinion that by the time he comes out from prison, his hidden assets which wouldn’t have been tampered with, would have gained much value and that he would at least have somethings to fall back on. Hmmmmmm……