Louisiana man Michael Neu, 67 arrest by Police for advance fee fraudster posing as a Nigerian prince.
Michael faces 269 counts of wire fraud and money laundering for taking part in hundreds of financial transactions involving phone and online scams to con money from people across the United States.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, the phishing scam begins with an email purporting to be from a high-ranking Nigerian official who seeks financial assistance or personal information to retrieve an alleged inheritance.
The supposed Nigerian prince asks for the victims personal banking information in order to speed the transfer of the purported inheritance or temporarily hold the allegedly pilfered funds. The information can then be used to withdraw funds from the victim’s accounts.
The Police however claim that some of the money obtained in the scams was wired to his co-conspirators in Nigeria and many other leads in the case connect to people outside the U.S.
Police noted that while these kinds of emails are laughable to many people, authorities report millions of dollars in losses to such scams each year.
“If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is,” said Police Chief Randy Fandal in the Facebook post.
“Never give out personal information over the phone, through e-mail, cash checks for other individuals, or wire large amounts of money to someone you don’t know. 99.9 percent of the time, it’s a scam.”