US Probe Leads To 281 Arrests Worldwide Over Cyber-Assisted Fraud- Justice Dept.

US Probe Leads to 281 Arrests Worldwide Over Cyber-Assisted Fraud- Justice Dept.

WASHINGTON (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 11th September, 2019) A four month investigation by multiple US law enforcement agencies has led to the arrest of 281 people in the United States and overseas for running schemes that intercept and hijack wire transfers from businesses and individuals, the Justice Department said in a release.

"Operation reWired [resulted] in 281 arrests in the United States and overseas, including 167 in Nigeria, 18 in Turkey and 15 in Ghana," the release said on Tuesday, adding that 74 people were arrested in the United States.

Arrests were also made in France, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Malaysia, and the United Kingdom, the Justice Department said.

The technique known as "cyber-enabled financial fraud" often targets employees with access to company finances and businesses working with foreign suppliers that regularly perform wire transfers, the release said.

"We discovered that the conspirators stole more than 250,000 identities and filed more than 10,000 fraudulent tax returns, attempting to receive more than $91 million in [tax] refunds," IRS Criminal Investigation Chief Don Fort said in the release.

In addition, fake romances, employment opportunities, fraudulent auto sales, rental and lottery scams were used to lure victims into wiring money, often to transnational organized crime networks, according to the release.

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