Uche Raymond Okoye, also known as Uche Parker, a Nigerian national who police say is part of a criminal organisation that has allegedly scammed unsuspecting Guyanese victims out of millions, was faced with four charges on Tuesday, including demanding money by menace.
In a press release, the Guyana Police Force (GPF) said Okoye, who was remanded to prison, is suspected to be part of a criminal network involving Nigerian nationals who collaborate with other associates and solicited cash from their victims by promising high valued merchandise to be delivered following the payment of a charge or fee amounting to millions from four victims so far.
He appeared before Magistrate Leron Daly at the Georgetown Magistrates Court and pleaded not guilty to two counts of obtaining money by false pretence, one count of demanding money by menace, and one count of illegal entry into Guyana.
The police said Okoye entered Guyana from Brazil without presenting himself to the nearest immigration officer.
The matters were adjourned until December 7th, 2020, for report.
However, the police said more charges will be laid against Okoye and others soon as their investigation widens and more victims are coming forward with reports.
The police said the criminal network has been operating for the past six months in Guyana and has links to the United Kingdom, Nigeria, Peru, Brazil, Vene-zuela, Argentina, Paraguay and the United States of America, among other countries.
On Thursday, the GPF issued an alert to citizens, particularly women, about a scam involving persons pretending to be of Nigerian nationality.
According to the police, the perpetrators would send a Facebook Friend Request to the intended victim and subsequently seek communication via WhatsApp.
The police added that the mastermind, who is apparently residing overseas, expresses a romantic interest in the intended victim and indicates that he would be sending some gifts for her, including jewellery.
She would later receive a call from someone purporting to be employed at a shipping company about a box having arrived at the airport for her, and custom officials finding money inside and threatening prosecution. “At this juncture the intended victim is informed that she will have to pay various sums of money to a number of individuals in order to avoid prosecution and uplift the box. These monies are to be sent to identified persons through Money Transfer Services or a Post Office,” the police said.
Once the money is sent, the mastermind is never heard from again and the victim is defrauded of the money sent, the force added.
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