A suspected fraudster, Awoleye Joshua Oluwatofunmi has confessed to deceiving a United States lady that he was a black American.
Daily Post reports that he spoke while being paraded by the Police Commissioner in Kwara State, Paul Odama.
The CP lamented that scammers had destroyed the name of Nigeria abroad, vowing that the Nigeria Police Force would ensure they were fished out and prosecuted.
The 23-year-old suspected internet fraudster, Awoleye allegedly defrauded one African-American, Vonapolouis Moss (f) of 2962, W64th Court Merrillville, Indiana, United States of America.
He was paraded at the State police command headquarters in Ilorin on Friday.
Narrating her ordeal in an interview with journalists, Vonapolouis revealed that she got into contact with the suspect, Awoleye Joshua, who claimed to be a black American but lives in Nigeria and “I told him I am also a black person myself, then we kept talking and talking.
He said he was a dramatist and a student, and asked if I can help him with about 170,000 US dollars, so I said how can I help him, he said I can send the money through electronic transfer.
“He then asked if I can send through gift cards and I sent 200 US dollars gift card; after that, I sent pictures to him and we kept on talking and he said he was hungry and needed money for food and that he had nobody else but me and I sent more gift card of 100 US dollars to him.”
The distraught lady further revealed that “Awoleye Joshua said he needed more food and I just kept sending him more money and kept talking and he asked me to come to Nigeria and I came to Nigeria.”
Asked what she wants the authorities to do on the matter, Vonapolouis said amidst tears that “I just want to go back home, I think it is a lesson learnt.
“I have been helping people and I would not want anything bad to happen to him, Awoleye.
“I don’t know what else to say, besides, I see Nigeria as a beautiful place, I have never lived in a place with a lot of black people, I see so many beautiful black people living in one place.
“The hospitality of the people is so amazing, it is a beautiful place and I would love to come back with my family,” she declared.
On his own part, the suspected fraudster, Awoleye, 23-year-old HND 1 Mechanical Engineering student of Kwara State Polytechnic, Ilorin, who claimed to be an indigene of Offa in Kwara State but born in Ibadan Oyo State, said they were into a relationship.
He said although he had lied under a fake name as Howard Adams, he later confessed his real identity as Awoleye Joshua Oluwatofunmi after which they continued their relationship.
“So, we were in a good relationship and I asked her for money but she said no, that she does not want to be used and I told her I am not that kind of person.”
“I asked her for help which she rendered and said she wants to come to Nigeria and since I had nothing to hide, I asked her to come to Nigeria.”
According to the suspect, Vonapolouis landed at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos last Monday night and slept in a hotel in Lagos.
“On Tuesday morning, she told me she had already landed at the Ilorin International Airport, I booked an Uber cab to convey her and we lodged in one of the hotels in Ilorin that she had already booked while she was in the United States of America,” he added.
Awoleye said there was no fight between them till he got arrested at the hotel adding, “I don’t know why I was arrested.”
He said they went to a Bureau de Change in Ilorin where the American lady changed some dollars into Nigerian currency which she paid into his account because she had no bank account in Nigeria.
Awoleye said from the Bureau de Change, they stopped over at Shoprite Mall where they bought some items and on getting to the hotel he kept the remaining amount of money in the drawer of their room.
He denied collecting 5,000 US dollars from the victim, claiming that all he collected from her was 800 US dollars within the period of their relationship, which she willingly gave him.
“I have no excuse to have lied to her that I am an American and not a Nigerian; she helped me because she knew me and said she wants to come to Nigeria to know my family. My family is not in Ilorin,” Awoleye disclosed.