Nigerian man sentenced in fraud scheme that targeted women

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. — A federal judge in Pennsylvania has sentenced a Nigerian man to more than seven years in prison for conspiring to launder approximately $1.89 million in mail and wire fraud proceeds in a scheme that targeted women.

Jabin Okpako, 36, and his wife, Christine Bradley Okpako, 54, of Sayre, Pennsylvania, transferred the funds out of the United States to three separate bank accounts in Nigeria, prosecutors said.

Authorities said the couple targeted women, ranging in age from 55 to 85, who visited online game, relationship and dating websites. After cultivating online relationships, the pair induced the women to send money for fictitious reasons, prosecutors said.

According to prosecutors, the fictitious purposes included to help a worker in Alaska who fell from a tower, to aid the United Nations and to recover a $6 million inheritance.

The judge ordered Jabin Okpako to make restitution in the amount of $440,950 and to forfeit proceeds of the criminal activity.

His wife pleaded guilty in March to conspiracy to commit money laundering through mail and wire fraud and is awaiting sentencing.