The Dubai Police Force, United Arab Emirates, has revealed how it arrested Nigerian Instagram celebrity, Ramon Abass, aka Hushpuppi.
In a video released on its official Twitter handle on Thursday, the police said a special team had been tracking the suspect and his gang’s activities on the social media for about four months.
The DPF revealed that upon the arrest of Hushpuppi and 12 other members of his crew, including Olalekan Ponle, aka Woodberry, they discovered that fraud amounting to 1.6 billion dirham (N168bn) had been perpetrated by the gang.
No fewer than 1,926,400 persons from different parts of the world were also said to have fallen victim to the suspects.
According to the police, 13 luxury cars, estimated at 35 million dirham (N3.7bn) were recovered from the house, where the suspects were arrested.
The Dubai police said the raid, carried out on June 10, 2020, was dubbed: Fox Hunt 2.
While footage of the operation played, a narrator said,
“In less than just four months, the Dubai Police Force was able to solve the new operation dubbed: Fox Hunt 2, where 12 other gang members were also arrested.
“Six raids were carried out simultaneously, while the suspects were sleeping in their Dubai residences. After months of investigating and hours of monitoring the gang’s social media accounts, a team of highly-trained Dubai police officers were able to confirm the gang’s whereabouts and fraudulent activities.
“The Nigerian Instagram celebrity, who was arrested on multiple fraud charges for crimes committed in different parts of the world, boasted about his wealth and expensive possession on social media, claiming he is a successful businessman.
“Little did Abass (Hushpuppi) know that the Dubai E-police were tracking his every move and taking note of all his social media activities.”
On how the suspects operated, the police said Hushpuppi and his team usually created fake pages for existing websites and redirected victims’ payments to their own accounts.
The Dubai police also said they discovered that the gang specialised in hacking corporate emails and sending fake messages to clients in order to redirect financial transfers and bank details to their own accounts.
“Before their arrest, Abass (Hushpuppi) and his crew members were responsible for scams amounting to 1.6 billion dirham. The police officers were also able to seize items worth 150 million dirham after they claimed 21 computers, 47 smartphones, 15 storage devices and five hard disks containing data.
“Additionally, 13 luxury cars worth 25 million dirham were bought by Hushpuppi and his gang using the money stolen from people who had been scammed.”