SAMUT PRAKAN – Pol Col Supaset Chokchai, Deputy Chief of the Tourist Police Division, has reported that Nigerian National Chidiebere Cajetan Awugosi, 35, and his girlfrien Thai National Supaporn Iemwijit, 30, have been arrested in Samut Prakan, having been accused of swindling more than 5 million baht from victims via Facebook.
Both were caught late Tuesday when police raided their apartment on Theparak Road in Muang district. Seized were seven mobile phones, four bank books and some telephone SIM cards.
Pol Col Supaset Chokchai, deputy Chief of the Tourist Police Division, said told the Bangkok Post that the arrest followed complaints that a gang of scammers had swindled several victims out of more than five million baht via Facebook. That prompted police to investigate and later found Ms Supaporn. A warrant was sought for her arrest.
During the raid, police found her Nigerian boyfriend Chidiebere Cajetan Awugosi who tried to resist arrest and physically assaulted police members. Evidence linked to the scam, including mobile phones with SMS messages about money transferred from victims, were also recovered.
Pol Col Supaset Chokchai, said the Nigerian an immigration check found there were no entry stamps in his passport.
Investigators alleged that the Nigerian and his girlfriend had been hired to open several bank accounts under their names to receive money transfers from victims. They had been paid 5,000 baht per account, said Pol Col Supaset.
Police handed over Ms Supaporn to Phaholyothin police for legal action. The officers pressed charges of illegal entry and obstructing officers from performing their duties against the Nigerian suspect before handing him over to Samrong Nua police station for further legal proceedings. The investigation would be extended to arrest alleged accomplices.
The deputy tourist police chief warned people not to be duped by money scam gangs. Gang members often used photos of good-looking foreign men in their profile pictures to lure potential victims via social network sites, particularly Facebook, said Pol Col Supaset.
The gang had duped people into believing that their valuables had been seized at Suvarnabhumi Airport. They claimed they needed money to pay to police or customs officials in order to get their seized valuables. Victims had been lured to transfer money into the gang’s accounts.
On Feb 7th, Thailand’s Technology Crime Suppression Division (TCSD) police arrested the Nigerian man, identified as IFeanyi George Okoronkwo or OJ, at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport on Friday for allegedly luring Thai female victims online for Money.
A group of foreign and Thai suspects, earlier arrested by the Thai police, said that OJ is the head of the transnational scamming syndicate. He tricked victims into believing that he was a doctor from Belgium until they trust him and formed some kind of relationship.