By Salim Yunusa
Abidemi Rufai, the Senior Special Assistant to Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, has been arrested in the United States of America over $350,000 employment fraud.
Rufai was quizzed by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation on Friday evening at the John F Kennedy International Airport in New York following a criminal complaint.
He was subsequently charged with defrauding the Washington State Employment Security Department of over $350,000.
The suspect was said to have used the stolen identities of more than 100 Washington residents to file fraudulent claims with ESD for pandemic-related unemployment benefits.
Rufai was accused of using variations of a single e-mail address in a manner intended to evade automatic detection by fraud systems.
US law enforcement agents said more than $288,000 was deposited into an American bank account controlled by Rufai between March and August 2020.
“Since the first fraud reports to our office in April 2020, we have worked diligently with a federal law enforcement team to track down the criminals who stole funds designated for pandemic relief,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Gorman.
“This is the first, but will not be the last, significant arrest in our ongoing investigation of ESD fraud.”