Home NEWS US Nabs Aide to Gov. Dapo Abiodun Over $350,000 Fraud

US Nabs Aide to Gov. Dapo Abiodun Over $350,000 Fraud

by InlandTown Editor
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The United States has arrested Abidemi Rufai, the Senior Special Assistant to Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun for alleged fraud. He was alleged to have filed fraudulent claims with Employment Security Department for unemployment benefits last year during the COVID-19 pandemic reaching a tune of over $350,000.

In a statement released by the US Department of Justice, the District of Washington on Monday revealed that Rufai, 42 years, allegedly used the pseudonym Sandy Tang as well as the stolen identities of more than 100 Washington residents to file the claims. Acting US Attorney Tessa Gorman said, “Rufai also filed fraudulent unemployment claims with Hawaii, Wyoming, Massachusetts, Montana, New York, and Pennsylvania. Rufai used variations of a single e-mail address in a manner intended to evade automatic detection by fraud systems. By using this practice, Rufai made it appear that each claim was connected with a different email account.”

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According to the Acting US Attorney Tessa Gorman said, it was revealed that the department received criminal complaints that said Rufai mailed some of the proceeds of his fraud to the Jamaica and New York addresses of his relatives with more than $288,000 deposits between March and August 2020. They swung into action working “with a federal law enforcement team to track down the criminals who stole funds designated for pandemic relief.” “This is the first, but will not be the last, significant arrest in our ongoing investigation of ESD fraud,” said Gorman.

Rufai was arrested on Friday evening at the John F Kennedy International Airport in New York based on his way out of the US. He was said to have appeared before a court on May 15 and scheduled for a detention hearing on May 19.  If found guilty, Rufai risks 30 years in prison since the fraud relates to benefits paid in connection with a presidentially declared disaster or emergency.

Meanwhile, the Ogun State government confirmed that Rufai is a special assistant to Dapo Abiodun but has denied any knowledge of the involvement of Abidemi Rufai’s in the crime. Speaking to Punch, the Special Adviser to the Ogun State Governor on Public Communications, Remmy Hassan said he was not aware of his arrest for any crime.

The United States reiterated that the FBI and our partners will not stand idly by while individuals attempt to defraud programs meant to assist American workers and families suffering the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic. Special Agent in Charge FBI Seattle, Donald Voiret, said “Greed is a powerful motivator. Unfortunately, the greed alleged to this defendant affects all taxpayers.”




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