From the Office of the U.S. Attorney
- Henry “Uche” Obilo, age 30, of Miami, Fl., was sentenced to 88 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, for his role as a leader in a home equity line of credit fraud scheme(1) that has been linked to more than $36 million in attempted fraud and almost $11 million in actual losses. To date, investigators have identified more than 180 victims. Obilo was ordered to pay restitution of $577,149.33.
- According to court records, Obilo and other co-conspirators used fee-based web databases to search for potential victim account holders with large balances in home equity line of credit (HELOC) accounts. This information included name, address, date of birth, and social security number. [...] Armed with a victim’s personal information, the conspirators, [...] called the victim’s financial institution, impersonated the victim, and transferred the majority of the available money from the HELOC account into an account from which a wire transfer could be sent. The conspirators would then wire transfer hundreds of thousands of dollars to domestic or overseas accounts controlled by members of the conspiracy.(2)
For the U.S. Attorney press release, see Miami Man Sentenced to 88 Months in $11 Million Bank-Fraud Conspiracy.
(1) Others involved in the scheme include: Abel Nnabue, age 34, of Dallas, who was sentenced to 54 months on Jan. 30, 2009; Precious Matthews, age 27, of Miami, who was sentenced 51 months on Feb. 13, 2009; Brandy Anderson, age 31, of Dallas, who was sentenced to 2 years of supervised probation and 40 days of community confinement on Feb. 20, 2009; Ezenwa Onyedebelu, age 21, of Dallas, who was sentenced to 37 months on Feb. 27, 2009; Daniel Orjinta, age 43, of Nigeria, who was sentenced to 42 months on March 6, 2009; Paula Gipson, age 34, of Dallas, Texas, who was sentenced to 15 months on Sept. 4, 2009. The conspiracy’s ringleader, Tobechi Onwuhara, age 30, of Dallas, has an outstanding warrant for his arrest and remains a fugitive. Information about Onwuhara is available on the America’s Most Wanted website: http://www.amw.com/fugitives/brief.cfm?id=59947.
(2) The conspirators used caller-ID spoofing services, prepaid cell phones and PC wireless Internet access cards, and transferred victims’ home telephone numbers in order to impersonate the victim and avoid identifying themselves, according to the U.S. Attorney's office.