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article imageNigerian fraud scam artist gets six years

By Alexander Baron     Jan 17, 2013 in Crime
London - Who could be dumb enough to fall for the Nigerian 419 advance fee fraud scam? Lots of people apparently, but Patrick Emuh didn't look so bright when the judge handed him a 6 year sentence.
November 2001 saw two international cricket stars sentenced at Southwark Crown Court for fraud. These were young men at the top of their profession who threw away both their honour and their freedom, for what?
Nearly two years later, a man who doesn't know the meaning of honour has been gaoled for 6 years for operating one of the classic Internet con tricks, the so-called 419 scam.
If you are one of the few people this side of the Land of Narnia who hasn't heard of it, here is a website for you to check out. In the meantime, don't respond to any unsolicited e-mails that tell you you've won the lottery or anything else.
The local press describes Patrick Emuh as a Mottingham con man; Londoner, he ain't! And after he has served his six year sentence he will be deported to his native Nigeria, where it could be the local police will take an interest in him. In recent years, the Nigeria authorities have been clamping down on this sort of thing. Emuh is said to have conned at least 20 people worldwide into sending him no less than £788,297, an activity described as fraud on an industrial scale.
Odious though Emuh may be, he is small potatoes in comparison with Achilleas Kallakis and Alexander Williams, who were also convicted at Southwark Crown Court, this time of defrauding banks of a staggering £740 million. Their case was handled by the Serious Fraud Office. Rather than simply sending out dodgy e-mails to their marks - a trick that is hardly likely to work on a bank - they forged official looking documents. Both men have a track record dating back to at least 1995, which means their sentences of seven years and five years respectively are somewhat on the lenient side.
It has to be said they didn't get away with anything like the projected £740 million, and this case has a history dating back to 2003. They ran an office in Mayfair, one of the most expensive areas of London, using the name The Pacific Group of Companies, which is the same name as a bona fide construction firm based in Canada.
Kallakis was said to have used the proceeds of his fraud to fund the lifestyle of the super-rich maintaining a fleet of chauffeur driven Bentleys, a private plane, a private helicopter, a luxury yacht moored in Monaco harbour and a collection of high value art works. And the rest he frittered away!
More about Patrick Emuh, 419 scam, Achilleas Kallakis
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