Sunday, April 14, 2024
HomeNationalInterpol, NPF arrest Nigerian ‘cybercriminal behind international syndicate’

Interpol, NPF arrest Nigerian ‘cybercriminal behind international syndicate’

The International Criminal Police Organisation (Interpol) says it has arrested a 37-year-old Nigerian man for allegedly operating a transnational cybercrime syndicate.

Interpol said the syndicate had launched mass phishing campaigns and business email compromise schemes in several international operations across four continents.

The international police, in a statement released on its website, said the suspect was arrested by the cybercrime unit of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos.

The agency added that the intelligence leading to the arrest of the suspect was “enriched by analysts within INTERPOL’s Cyber Fusion Centre”.

Interpol did not reveal the name of the suspect.

“The cybercrime unit of the Nigeria Police Force arrested a 37-year-old Nigerian man in an international operation spanning four continents, coordinated and facilitated by the recently created Africa operations desk within INTERPOL’s cybercrime directorate,” the statement reads.

“The intelligence was enriched by analysts within INTERPOL’s Cyber Fusion Centre, which brings together experts from law enforcement and industry to turn information on criminal activities into actionable intelligence.

“INTERPOL’s AFJOC desk then referred the intelligence to Nigeria and followed up with multiple case coordination meetings supported by law enforcement in Australia, Canada and the United States.

“Investigators began to map out and track the alleged malicious online activities of the suspect, thanks to ad hoc support from private sector firm CyberTOOLBELT, as well as tracking his physical movements as he travelled from one country to another.

“Nigerian law enforcement successfully apprehended the suspect at Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos.

Speaking on the arrest, Garba Umar, an assistant inspector-general of police and vice-president of Interpol for Africa, said the suspect’s arrest is a “testament” to Nigeria’s collaboration with Interpol in combating cybercrimes.

“The arrest of this alleged prominent cybercriminal in Nigeria is testament to the perseverance of our international coalition of law enforcement and INTERPOL’s private sector partners in combating cybercrime,” Umar said.

“I hope the results of Operation Delilah will stand as a reminder to cybercriminals across the world that law enforcement will continue to pursue them, and that this arrest will bring comfort to victims of the suspect’s alleged campaigns.”

On his part, Bernardo Pillot, Interpol’s assistant director of cybercrime operation, said the persistence of law enforcement agents resulted in the success of the case.

“This case underlines both the global nature of cybercrime and the commitment required to deliver a successful arrest through a global to regional operational approach in combatting cybercrime,” Pillot said.

This story is published in partnership with Report for the World, a global service program that supports local public interest journalism.

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