A Nigerian national who had been living in the United Arab Emirates has been sentenced to more than eight years in a US prison for his role in an $8 million cybercrime scheme.
The man, 31-year-old Olalekan Jacob Ponle, aka Mark Kain and Mr Woodbery, was involved in a business email compromise (BEC) scheme for at least nine months in 2019, while he was living in the UAE.
He was arrested in the UAE in June 2020 and extradited to the United States the next month. Earlier this year he pleaded guilty to a wire fraud charge and he has now been sentenced to eight years and four months in prison.
In addition, he will have to pay over $8 million in restitution to victims, and forfeit luxury cars and watches that he obtained using proceeds of the cybercrime scheme.
According to the US Justice Department, Ponle and his accomplices used phishing attacks to gain access to email accounts, which they then used to send fraudulent emails instructing victims to wire money to bank accounts they controlled.
Authorities say the cybercriminals attempted to obtain more than $51 million from targeted organizations, with actual losses exceeding $8 million.
Earlier this year, another Nigerian national, Solomon Ekunke Okpe, was sentenced to four years in a US prison for his role in a BEC operation.