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Be Careful So That You Don’t Unwittingly Become A Money Mule For Money Laundering

This might be a long read, but trust me when I say it will be worth it.

So a little over a year ago, this lady met a guy online and they connected. The guy was good looking, dressed really well and was based abroad. What she liked the most was how generous he was. On her birthday, he sent her 300k. When her rent was due, she told him and he sent her the complete rent money. She would also randonly wake up to alerts from him. She had never met any man like him.

Months after a lot of chatting, sexting and phone calls, he came into Nigeria to finally meet her face to face. He somehow expected a “what I ordered versus what was delivered” scenario, but he was pleasantly surprised to see that she was even more beautiful in person. He told her so.

They both discovered they had a physical connection and ofcourse, intense genital meeting and greeting took place all through his stay before he left back for his base abroad.

The lady discovered that she had really hit the jackpot with this guy. He was young, handsome and rich, and was a stallion in bed… do when he told her that he wanted to take their relationship to the next level (marriage), she was ecstatic.

Her dad was late and her mom was overjoyed to find out that a fine, young, rich man wanted to marry her daughter. She had suffered a great deal after her husband died, and it was not easy training her daughter (her only child) alone.

Months before the guy was to return to Nigeria to marry her, the girl was picked up by the EFCC for money laundering.

Everyone who knew the girl was shocked.

Surely it must have been a mistake.

But it wasn’t.

Apparently, the guy had been using the girl as a “money mule”…

Money mules are people who knowingly or unknowingly help criminals or criminal organizations launder their illicit profits by transferring illegally acquired (stolen) money in person, through a courier service, or electronically. They do this by providing their own accounts to help receive and transfer fraudulent funds, thereby “legitimizing” it.

The girl swore that she didn’t know that she was being used, but the fact is that sometimes, ignorance of a crime does not absolve you of culpability. Money mules are complicit and risk criminal prosecution and long prison sentences.

First of all, the guy had insisted that she opened a new personal account and that was the account he would transfer money to her through.

For everytime he sent her money, he sent her extra to ‘help’ him send to someone else.

When he sent her 300k for her birthday… he had sent 1.8 million and had asked her to transfer the 1.5 million to his brother who was helping him with a building project.

When he sent her rent, he had sent extra 1million to send to another cousin for the uncle’s surgery.

1 million here… 700k there… 950k there 1.2 million there… etc

What the girl didn’t know was that the guy was part of a syndicate under investigation and her account had been flagged and was being monitored.

Money laundering is the process of making illegally earned money (money obtained from certain crimes, such as extortion, fraud, drug trafficking, kidnapping, etc) to appear to have been derived from legal activities, often through complex bank transfers and transactions.

Money can be laundered by many methods that vary in complexity and sophistication. The idea is to make the money “clean” so that banks and other financial institutions will deal with it without suspicion.

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