Hushpuppi and Abba Kyari
A police report has shown how a syndicate led by convicted Nigerian fraudster and Instagram big boy, Ramon Abass popularly known as Hushpuppi, paid the whopping sum of N235,120, 000 to the younger brother of suspended Deputy Commissioner of Police and Head of Intelligence Response Team of the Nigeria Police Force, Abba Kyari.
Investigations also revealed that Kyari sent N44m in different transactions to his brother who was acting as a proxy.
The police officer who is currently in custody of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, was suspended by the police last July for his alleged links to Hushpuppi following an indictment by the US Department of Justice after an FBI investigation.
In the report submitted to the Attorney-General of the Federation, it was revealed that a total of N279.120m was sent to Kyari’s younger brother's bank account at various times from the cyber scam syndicate members -Efe Martins (lead coordinator), Sikiru Adekoya, Usman Ibrahim, and Hussaini Ala.
It read in part;
“Sikiru Adekoya has many times received money from Hushpuppi and Efe and has equally transferred money to Usman Ibrahim. Adekoya after initial denial of having any financial transaction with both Hushpuppi and Efe Martins eventually admitted receiving various sums of money through transfers into his Bank.
‘’However, he could not offer reasonable explanations of what the sums were meant for and what he did with the monies. The network of Hushpuppi Internet fraud syndicate consists of Efe Martins as the lead coordinator who through his company, Efe Martins Integrated Concept Ltd., has at various times transferred different sums of money to Sikiru Adekoya, Usman Waziri Ibrahim, Hussaini Ala.
“A junior brother to DCP Kyari is a major beneficiary of funds from the Zenith Bank account of Hussaini Ala from where he at different times received various sums totaling N218, 120, 000. He also received the sum of N44m in multiple transactions from DCP Abba Kyari.’’
Punch reported that the Special Investigation Panel which authored the report did not invite or interrogate Kyari’s brother about the huge sums of money deposited into his bank account by the fraud syndicate and the DCP.
It was also noted that Kyari violated the social media policy of the Nigeria Police Force by responding to the Federal Bureau of Intelligence’s indictment on his Facebook page without recourse to laid down procedures.
The Force Disciplinary Committee which reviewed the SIP investigation report also accused Kyari of hobnobbing with fraudulent characters, violating the police professional ethics.
For hobnobbing with fraudulent characters and violating the police professional ethics, the committee awarded Kyari the punishment of reduction in rank from DCP to ACP, stating that “the evidence of (N8mn) bribe is circumstantial in that the bribe mainly was not paid into the officer’s account nor was any proceeds of the bribe traced by the panel much less linking the officer to any such proceeds.’’
The FDC also claimed there's no evidence of direct fund transfer from either Hushpuppi or Efe into any of Kyari’s accounts “but there were records of various funds transfers totaling N17m which originated from Efe Martins into the accounts of Usman Waziri, Hussaini Ala and brother to DCP Kyari.”
An investigation into Kyari’s links to criminal gangs and alleged involvement in money laundering as directed by the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), has also been intensified.
Malami disclosed that a prima facie case of money laundering had been established against the former IRT commander in his legal advice to the police leadership.
The AGF said;
“That there exists a prima facie case of conspiracy, collaboration, receipt, conversion, transfer and/or retention of proceeds of unlawful activities contrary to the provision of Section 15, 17 & 18 of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2004 and Section 17 of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Est) Act, Cap EI Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 against DCP Abba Kyari and other suspects in view of the overwhelming evidence showing the nature of his disguised financial transactions and activities with Abbas Hushpuppi, Efe Martins, Usman Ibrahim Waztiri, Sikiru Adekoya, Hussaini Ala and Sharon Festus who are all confirmed members of international internet fraud network.
“Although the facts and circumstances of this case as contained in the case fire are suggestive to money laundering offences against DCP Abba Kyari and his accomplices namely: Abbas Hushpuppi, Efe Martins, Usman Ibrahim Waziri, Sikiru Adekoya, Hussaini Ala and Sharon Festus; in order to successfully prosecute them, there is a need for a more thorough dissecting and tracing of the suspected 33 proceeds of crime received by DCP Abba Kyari directly or indirectly through the said accomplices.”
Malami also directed the police to trace the movement of money, withdrawals from the various accounts linked to Kyari and his suspected accomplices as well as the use of the funds in purchasing physical assets and properties in order to clearly expose ‘’the disguised nature of the suspected proceeds of crime.’’