Nigerian man and Thai woman arrested for N134m romance scams in Thailand
A Nigerian man and a Thai lady were detained in Thailand for allegedly participating in online “romance scams” that defrauded their victims of at least B11 million. (N134,474,028.70)
Mr Abuchi Johnkennedy Onyenecherem, a Nigerian national, and Thai woman Ampha ‘Pink’ Phatthap, 26, were arrested on Tuesday, September 28 at a rented room in Srisoonthorn, Thalang, Phuket, police said in a statement on Thursday, September 30.
Officers from the Immigration Bureau and Cherng Talay Police were present during the arrests.
On Monday, September 27, Chonburi Provincial Court issued an outstanding warrant for Ampha.
Ampha had created fictitious accounts on Facebook, according to officers. Victims were duped by using LINE and other online platforms to entice them into a romantic connection, after which they were asked to give money to cover living expenses, presents, or to return items by mail.
Ampha admitted to defrauding her victims for more than B11 million over the course of six months. The funds were subsequently transferred to other bank accounts by a Bangkok-based network.
According to authorities, Ampha also admitted to being compensated for her role in the schemes.
Mr Abuchi had been residing in the country illegally, according to immigration inspectors, and is being investigated for his possible role in the romance scam, police said.
The two were arrested and transferred to Cherng Talay Authorities Station, where they were charged with the crimes for which police already had proof.
According to the police, more charges could be filed.