AUSTIN, Texas — Homeland Security special agents said criminals operate several types of scams out of Austin.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office reported one woman lost hundreds of thousands of dollars before taking her own life after realizing she was in an Austin-based romance scam.
The victim’s name has not been released.
The man charged with crimes connected to the scam is Kingsley Otuya. He will spend 11 years in prison.
Last year, the KVUE Defenders reported about how foreign scam money goes to several countries.
Court records show 34-year-old Otuya was part of a larger investigation into West African fraud schemes. Special agents said he acted as a “catcher.”
Catchers quickly withdraw money from bank accounts after the victims pay.
Court records show Otuya used nine different banks in Austin, all opened with fake passports. Each withdrawal was under $10,000.
And this isn’t the only case.
Earlier this year, KVUE told you scammers targeted home sales. More people have been arrested in that case, too – 74 U.S.-based operatives with four based in Texas.
The worldwide arrests netted 281 suspects.
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