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Friday, July 12, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Nigerian Crooks Facing Hard Time

HOUSTON (CN) - Two Nigerian men convicted of bank fraud and aggravated identity theft face more than 60 years in federal prison, prosecutors said.

Kolawole Monday Onenese, 37, of Houston, and Ramoni Alade Matti, 42, of Nigeria, were charged in a five-count superseding indictment in February.

A federal jury found them guilty on all counts after a 4-day trial and 3 hours of deliberation, prosecutors said.

Twenty-seven 27 Chase credit accounts opened with a stolen identity, or existing accounts used without cardholders' consent, were traced to Onenese and his home, a U.S. Postal Inspection Service agent testified at the trial.

The government showed that Onenese and Matti "conspired with another" in the fraud, prosecutors said in the statement. They did not identify the third person.

Federal officials searched the men's apartment in June 2011, and seized "two laptop computers, credit reports in various names, credit cards, cell phones and sim cards, mail addressed to various names, a spiral notebook filled with personal identification information of dozens of people and other items related to identity theft," prosecutors said in the statement.

Onenese and Matti will be sentenced on June 11.

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