A Hanoi court sentenced a Nigerian man to 12 years in jail Tuesday for two separate fraud convictions, including one for pretending to love women and conning them out of money.
Oshanugor James Anyasi, 35, was convicted of cyber fraud for appropriating other people’s assets.
The love con involved three others, including a Vietnamese woman who is serving a three-year sentence given in February for the crime. Two other Nigerian men, the alleged masterminds, are still at large.
The four met each other in September 2012 and decided to cheat Vietnamese women by hooking up with them online, pretending to become their lovers and promising them expensive gifts, then faking phone calls and emails from customs and shipping agencies to ask them to transfer shipping fees to certain accounts.
Investigators found they had stolen more than 400 million (US$17,800) from 10 women. Anyasi got 15 percent for playing the role of an English businessman and chatting with the women, the Vietnamese got 10 percent, and the other two, reportedly based in Malaysia, took the rest.
One woman in southern Vietnam paid a “shipping fee” of nearly VND21 million before getting an email asking for another VND46 million. It was then that she realized it was a scam.
A woman in Nha Trang in central Vietnam paid nearly VND100 million, believing it was a fee to receive around VND10 billion Anyasi was transferring to Vietnam to buy land in the resort town.
A Ho Chi Minh City woman, who was promised an iPhone, a ring and 10,000 pounds, paid nearly VND12 million.
In the other fraud case, Anyasi stole nearly $12,000 by hacking into the email of a Vietnamese company and asking its partners to transfer the money.
He was arrested in February while waiting to board a flight to Cambodia.