U.S. authorities Thursday indicted four individuals currently being held in
the Netherlands for running an e-mail scam targeting U.S. Internet users.
According to the Department of Justice (DoJ), the four men allegedly sent
spam to “thousands” of potential victims in what is known as an
advance fee scheme. The DoJ claims the men falsely claimed to have control
of millions of dollars belonging to an individual with a terminal illness.
The defendants allegedly used e-mail to solicit the help of potential
victims to collect and distribute the funds to charity. In exchange for the
victims’ help, according to the indictment, the men promised the victims a
share of a large inheritance.
In order to claim the share, the victims were asked to pay a variety of
advance fees for legal representation, taxes or bogus documentation.
“The defendants in this scheme allegedly fleeced many unsuspecting American
victims with promises of charitable contributions and personal riches,” U.S.
Assistant Attorney General Alice Fisher said in a statement. “We cannot
allow these scam artists to prey on innocent victims in this country, and we
will work across the globe to knock out these fraudulent get-rich-quick
Three of the defendants named in the 11-count indictment — two of whom were
Nigerian citizens residing in the Netherlands — were arrested in Amsterdam
by Dutch authorities on Feb. 21 based on a criminal complaint filed in the
The fourth defendant, also a Nigerian citizen, is a fugitive.
Named in the indictments were Nnamdi Chizuba Anisiobi (a.k.a Yellowman,
Abdul Rahman, Michael Anderson, Edmund Walter, Helmut Schkinger, Nancy
White, Jiggaman and Namo); Anthony Friday Ehis (a.k.a John J. Smith, Toni N.
Amokwu and Mr. T) and Kesandu Egwuonwu (a.k.a KeKe, Joey Martin Maxwell,
Dutch authorities are holding the three men pending extradition to the
“Global fraudsters need to know that we are determined to find and prosecute
them,” said U.S. Attorney Roslynn Mauskopf. “Potential victims need to know
that any e-mail offering millions of dollars that requires that they send
money to receive this windfall is a scheme. Delete it.”