By Steve Baker Introduction – A real case Perhaps the best way to begin explaining how this fraud works and the effects it has is to begin with a recent criminal prosecution in the U. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Illinois.Olyinka Sunmola is a Nigerian citizen who was running this fraud from South Africa.The gang also had money-laundering contacts in China, Europe and the U. who provided bank accounts to receive the illicit cash.
During a visit to Perth they chat to Head of the WA Major Fraud Squad, Detective Senior Sergeant Dom Blackshaw about this specific case and more generally about internet-based relationship frauds.
He spent weeks or months developing relationships with his victims, often sending them gifts such as flowers or chocolates, and then asked for small sums of money for supposed minor emergencies in order to test the waters with them.
The women were convinced they had found their true love and soul mate, and in most cases he assured them that they would be married in the near future.
60 Minutes Australia investigates the death of 67 year old widow Jette Jacobs from Wagin who was identified as a romance fraud victim by the Western Australia Police and Consumer Protection anti-fraud initiative Project Sunbird BUT had already gone to South Africa to meet a Nigerian man she'd fallen in love with online.
60 Minutes reporter Allison Langdon and crew take Jette's son to Johannesburg, where his mum died.