A 33-year-old Nigerian national from Panvel has recently been arrested for allegedly cheating a Kerala businessman of Rs59 lakh. According to the police, the accused Harison Ilbo created a fake profile in Facebook under the name of John Kroklin and pretended to be an officer of the USA Army.
He befriended the businessman in January and told him that he owns a chemical laboratory in India and runs a private business which he wants to shift to USA.
Ilbo also met the businessman in Kerala and invited him to be the manager of the company. Later, after gaining his trust, Ilbo requested him for some money to clean his chemical lab. The businessman sent Ilbo Rs59 lakh in instalments till May.
On April 29, Ilbo told the businessman that he was going to Kerala and asked him to pick him up from Thiruvananthapuram. He then switched his phone off for three days, said the police. On the fourth day, Ilbo allegedly called the businessman and claimed that he has been abducted and that he would be killed unless he paid them a ransom of Rs25lakh.
This scared the businessman because if Ilbo died, the police may suspect his hand in it. He told Ilbo that he can pay only Rs8 lakh and then approached the Amboli police.
Based on technical evidence, senior inspector Bharat Gaikwad and his team traced Ilbo to his house in Taloja and arrested him. They realised that the Nigerian had faked the story to cheat the businessman. The police is now investigating if Ilbo has any criminal records and if he has cheated others.