Dubai Police Says Hushpuppi’s Arrest Saved World Billions In e-Fraud

Richard Ginika Izuora

The Dubai Police has said that the arrest of Hushpuppi, a Nigerian Instagram celebrity and 96 others saved billions in e-frauds that would have been perpetrated in 2020.

This was disclosed by Dubai Police on Tuesday.

The arrests allegedly prevented losses worth a whopping Dh11.8 billion (about $3.27bn); according to a statistical analysis released by the Dubai Criminal Investigation Department.

It said further that two Fox Hunt operations helped the police arrest 21 cyber-criminals in 2020.

‘‘Combined, these criminals would have caused Dh5.8 billion in losses,’’ the Police said.

Hushpuppi, real name – Raymond Olorunwa Abbas – was arrested in a highly celebrated Operation Fox Hunt 2. The operation saw the arrest of 12 cyber-criminals, including Hushpuppi and another famous alleged scammer, Woodberry. Equally important, the operation allegedly foiled a fraud plan worth around Dh1.6 billion (nearly $450m).

The report says crimes allegedly committed by Hushpuppi and his gang outside the United Arab Emirate (UAE) were huge. They include money laundering, hacking, impersonation, cyber fraud, scams, banking fraud and identity theft. Also, the police says it helped foil a phony inheritance scam and prevented the loss of Dh5.9 billion.

Dubai Police revealed that Operation Fox Hunt 1 saw the arrest of an African gang of nine fraudsters. The gang allegedly ran 81 fake businesses across 18 countries.

The operation revealed a hidden online fraud network that had managed to siphon off over Dh32 million in fraudulent money transfers.

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