Louisiana – (Courtesy AP) A Louisiana man was arrested in connection with a “Nigerian prince” scheme that has scammed people out of thousands of dollars, police announced Thursday.
Michael Neu, 67, faces 269 counts of wire fraud and money laundering after being taken into custody following an 18-month investigation, according to the Slidell Police Department. Police said Neu is suspected of being the scam’s “middleman” who obtained money and “subsequently wired” funds to his co-conspirators in Nigeria.
“Most people laugh at the thought of falling for such a fraud, but law enforcement officials report annual losses of millions of dollars to these schemes,” the Slidell police said in a statement.
Authorities warn to be cautious when receiving suspicious emails or phone calls from unknown individuals and urge people not to disclose personal or financial information. Slidell Police Chief Randy Fandal said he hopes Neu’s arrest serves as a warning to the public.
“If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is,” Slidell Police Chief Randy Fandal said in a released statement. “Never give out personal information over the phone, through e-mail, cash checks for other individuals, or wire large amounts of money to someone you don’t know. 99.9 percent of the time, it’s a scam.”
We deal with these on a daily basis, the money these scammers are raking is no joke. The schemes are becoming more elaborate and in-depth, with more and more scammers using these “middlemen” to help scam unsuspecting victims out of their cash. It works like this, the scammer befriends a male or female online via social networking or dating sites. The scammer begins gaining the trust of the victim, eventually gaining their full trust. When they are sure they have the person in their trap, is when they begin asking for money or other items.
They use photos of real military members or those of our fallen. Facebook has not been friendly to those of us who try to take action against these fake accounts. So we will continue the fight this way!
Remember! If it’s too good to be true, it probably is!
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