JAMES ALIYU, a Nigerian based in South Africa has been arrested for alleged $12 million fraud.

The International Criminal Police Organization popularly known as Interpol has arrested a suspected Nigerian cybercrime kingpin, James Aliyu over alleged financial crime in South Africa.

Aliyu was arrested in a luxury Sandton Estate and taken to the Randburg Magistrate’s Court.

The suspect is accused of involvement in a romance scam and Business Email compromise (BEC) fraud.

Aliyu, sometimes seen with his girlfriend, gained prominence for lavish spending, luxury lifestyle and holidays at different locations.

He owned expensive vehicles such as Porsche Cayenne, Mercedes C220d and Mercedes-Benz G63 allegedly purchased with proceeds of crime.

Aliyu is believed to be part of an international syndicate, whose members have been convicted in America.

The alleged fraudster had been on the radar of investigators for about six years.

His arrest was the climax of a multi-agency investigation collaboration between Interpol, the US Homeland Security investigations and the US Secret Service.

Aliyu is believed to be part of an international syndicate, some of whose members have already been convicted in the US.

He came into the spotlight in August last year when Sunday World reported that he accused South African actress, Khanyi Mbau’s boyfriend Terrence Kudzai Mushonga of defrauding him in an elaborate luxury R1.2m-vehicle scam.

The Sunday World quoted him as saying that he was “wanted by the FBI for scamming Americans millions of rand.”

According to the report, Aliyu believed a R720,000 Mercedes and a R500,000 Jaguar which he bought from Mushonga were stolen and hijacked by criminals he claimed had worked for Mushonga.

In March 2020, the SA Reserve Bank confiscated R231,000 contained in Aliyu’s Standard Bank account under Exchange Control Regulation 22E.