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Hushpuppi’s trial postponed again till next year

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The stalled trial of Ramon Abbas, the Nigerian Instagram celebrity, known as Hushpuppi has been postponed in California till May 2021, reports indicated yesterday.

Hushpuppi, who was extradited to the United States from Dubai in July, is facing strong criminal charges alleging he conspired to launder hundreds of millions of dollars from business email compromise (BEC) frauds and other scams.

The alleged scams included schemes targeting a U.S. law firm, a foreign bank and an English Premier League soccer club.

Premium Times reported today that Judge Otis Wright has scheduled Hushpuppie’s jury trial for 9:00 a.m. on May 4, 2021. Judge Wright made the order on 23 September.

The trial was expected to begin this month, but was rescheduled because of coronavirus. The 37-year-old Mr Abbas, was busted in Dubai in June by UAE police, working in collaboration with the FBI.

In July, Mr Abbas alongside another Nigerian fraud suspect Olalekan Ponle, popularly known as Woodberry, was extradited to Chicago, where he was first arraigned.

He was later transferred to Los Angeles, in California, where his trial will commence. According to an FBI affidavit supporting Abbas’s extradition to the US, the FBI said Abbas financed this opulent lifestyle through crime, and that he is one of the leaders of a transnational network that facilitates computer intrusions, fraudulent schemes (including BEC schemes), and money laundering, targeting victims around the world in schemes designed to steal hundreds of millions of dollars.” according to the affidavit.

The affidavit describes BEC schemes as often involving a computer hacker gaining unauthorized access to a business’ email account, blocking or redirecting communications to and/or from that email account, and then using the compromised email account or a separate fraudulent email account to communicate with personnel from a victim company and to attempt to trick them into making an unauthorized wire transfer.

“BEC schemes are one of the most difficult cybercrimes we encounter as they typically involve a coordinated group of con artists scattered around the world who have experience with computer hacking and exploiting the international financial system,” said United States Attorney Nick Hanna.

The affidavit alleges that Abbas and others committed a BEC scheme that defrauded a client of a New York-based law firm out of approximately $922,857 in October 2019. Abbas and co-conspirators allegedly tricked one of the law firm’s paralegals into wiring money intended for the client’s real estate refinancing to a bank account that was controlled by Abbas and the co-conspirators.

The affidavit also alleges that Abbas conspired to launder funds stolen in a $14.7 million cyber-heist from a foreign financial institution in February 2019, in which the stolen money was sent to bank accounts around the world. Abbas allegedly provided a co-conspirator with two bank accounts in Europe that Abbas anticipated each would receive €5 million (about $5.6 million) of the fraudulently obtained funds.Abbas and others further conspired to launder hundreds of millions of dollars from other fraudulent schemes and computer intrusions, including one scheme to steal £100 million (approximately $124 million) from an English Premier League soccer club, the complaint alleges.

If convicted of conspiracy to engage in money laundering, Abbas would face a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison.

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Entertainment

N6 calls Beyonce a ‘culture vulture’, ‘witch’ and ‘werey’ after her statement on the Lekki toll gate shootings

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OAP Nnamdi “N6” Nwabasili has slammed Beyonce following her statement on the shooting of End SARS protesters at the Lekki toll gate.

N6, who says he was at the Lekki toll gate when the shootings happened and has narrated the incident via his Instagram, shared Beyonce’s statement on the shootings to his Instagram Stories. He then tore her apart for it.

He called her a “culture vulture” who finally spoke up only after she saw blood. He also called her a “witch” and said he’s not surprised she has been silent all along when she was also silent while her sister beat her husband up in an elevator.

In another slide, he called her a “werey” ( mad person) and said her message as regards End SARS is “tone deaf”.

He also rubbished Beyonce’s claim in her statement that she is “collaborating with coalitions to provide emergency healthcare, food and shelter.”

N6 asked which Nigerian has received “Beyonce’s care package” then asked her if Ngerians told her they are hungry.

He said she’s lying, adding that only ”Americans and senseless people hail her and buy her overpriced Chinese knockoff Ivy leggings.”

“Cancelled in Nigeria forever. Werey,” he wrote at the end of his message.

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‘Enough is truly enough’- Janet Jackson lends her voice to #EndSARS campaign

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Janet Jackson has lend her voice to the #EndSARS campaign.

In a statement, she released to her Twitter account, the American singer praised brave Nigerian youths for their courageous fight for a better Nigeria and said those behind the killings and brutality of EndSARS protesters have brought shame to the nation.

See her full statement below.

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I lost my brother to Nigeria’s bad healthcare system — Rema

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Singer Rema has recounted how he lost his brother to Nigeria’s bad healthcare system.

In a tweet he shared, Rema revealed that his brother was cut wrongly while being operated on with a candle light.

The singer who disclosed that his brother bled to death thereafter, added that politicians keep diverting the money meant for good healthcare system and borrowing while using the country’s pain as a format.

Rema tweeted;

I lost my Brother to Nigeria’s bad healthcare system, they did a surgery on him with a candle light they cut him wrongly and he bled to death. The money to provide good healthcare system is in an old man’s foreign account and they keep borrowing using our pain as their format.

We’ve lost a lot of people to the decisions of a few people.

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