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Police arrest online 'romance scammer'

03 February 2014, 19:29

Abuja - Police on Monday said they had arrested a 28-year-old man wanted in connection with the death of an Australian woman and for defrauding her of $90,000 in an online dating scam.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) told AFP that Orowo Jesse Omokoh was arrested on January 28 in Nigeria, without stating where exactly.

The graduate, who attended the University of Ibadan, in the southwest of the country, will be brought before court for extradition proceedings, a spokesman said.

Omokoh is alleged to have struck up a fake online romance with Jette Jacobs, but five days after he moved to Johannesburg, South Africa, to meet her in February last year, she was found dead.

Some of her valuables were missing and Omokoh had returned to Nigeria.

"The South African police, which is investigating the mysterious death, are suspicious that Omokoh has a hand in the demise of Jacobs," the EFCC said.

The organisation, which investigates money-laundering and online scams, said Australian Federal Police informed officers in March that Omokoh had allegedly defrauded Jacobs of $90,000.

Jacobs, a grandmother from Western Australia, reportedly sent tens of thousands of dollars to Nigeria during her four-year "romance" with a man known as "Jesse", according to Australian media.

The 67-year-old is said to have previously met him in Johannesburg in 2010 without incident.

Her body was found on February 9. The EFCC said Omokoh had given "useful" information and "efforts are on to track his accomplices".



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