December 28, 2017
**Slidell Police Arrest “Nigerian Prince” Fraudster**
After an extensive 18-month investigation, Slidell Police arrested a “Nigerian Prince” responsible for scamming people out of thousands of dollars…well sort of.
Most of us have seen the e-mail, or one similar, about a Nigerian Price who claims that you are the named beneficiary in a will, to inherit an estate worth a million or more. Your personal financial information is needed to “prove” that you are the beneficiary and to speed the transfer of your inheritance. 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.
Slidell Police financial crimes investigators arrested , 67-year-old, Michael Neu (Slidell,LA), for 269 counts of Wire Fraud and Money Laundering. Neu is suspected to have been the “middle man”, and participated in hundreds of financial transactions, involving phone and internet scams, designed to con money from victims across the United States. Some of the money obtained by Neu was subsequently wired to co-conspirators in the Country of Nigeria.
The investigation is on-going, but is extremely difficult as many leads have led to individuals who live outside of the United States.
Slidell Police Chief Randy Fandal hopes this arrest serves as a reminder for Slidell residents to be leery of such scams. Chief Fandal said, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. 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.”
This scam, along with others, are becoming a common practice all across the United States. If someone call’s you claiming to be an official of a government agency, your local utility company, a law enforcement official, or anything similar, ask for a callback number and verify the person is legitimate.