Hushpuppi: How WhatsApp Calls, Text Messages, Photos Expose Abba Kyari – FBI
TECHDIGEST – More details have emanated on the alleged shady deal between suspected internet fraudster, Ramon Abbas aka Hushpuppi, and Nigerian Deputy Commissioner of Police, Abba Kyari.
The details are contained in court documents filed by the United States Government against Huspuppi, Kyari and four other suspected members of an internet fraud syndicate.
The U.S Government named Ramon Olorunwa Abbas (Ray Hushpuppi), Abba Alhaji Kyari (Deputy Commissioner of Police), Abdulrahman Imraan Juma, Vincent Kelly Chibuzo, Rukayat Motunraya Fashola and Bolatito Tawakalitu Agbabiaka as defendants in the criminal complaint it filed before the United States District Court for the Central District of California.
The complaint was filed on behalf of the U.S government by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) special agent, Andrew John Innocenti.
Meanwhile, following reports linking him to Hushpuppi’s alleged fraudulent activities, Kyari had on Thursday denied the allegations in a statement he posted on his Facebook page.
But in the court documents the FBI agent provided text messages, photos and transcripts of WhatsApp calls exchanged between Hushpuppi and the Deputy Police Commissioner.
The document showed how DCP Kyari arrested and detained a member of Hushpuppi’s clique, Vincent Kelly Chibuzo, at the behest of the alleged fraudster.
Hushpuppi told Kyari that Chibuzo had tried to expose a fraudulent scheme and divert the proceeds intended for him and a member of his clique after they fell out.
Part of the document reads: “ABBAS then arranged to have KYARI arrest and imprison CHIBUZO in Nigeria for attempting to redirect fraudulent proceeds intended for ABBAS and JUMA to himself, to keep CHIBUZO from interfering with the scheme. This section discusses those events and KYARI’s involvement in the conspiracy.”
“On January 15, 2020, this time using WhatsApp, ABBAS sent an audio recording to KYARI, stating, essentially, that he wanted to remind KYARI about what they discussed earlier,” referring to his request for Kyari to arrest and detain Chibuzo.
“On January 16, 2020, ABBAS sent the following threats to CHIBUZO: “I dey always tell people to think well before they offend me and make them make sure they fit stand the consequences when the time comes. I won’t say more than that but very soon, very very soon, the wrath of my hands shall find you and when it does, it will damage you forever. At this point I no get discussion with you, u have committed a crime that won’t be forgiven, that is punishable and you shall receive die punishment in due time I swear with my life you will regret messing with me, you will even wish you died before my hands will touch you.”
The document further showed that, “Also on January 16, 2020, ABBAS sent a message to KYARI on WhatsApp, and then placed five calls to another phone number (+2348060733588) that was listed as “ABBA KYARI.” Call records show that the last three of the calls were answered and that one of the calls lasted more than two minutes.
“Shortly after that, ABBAS received a message from KYARI, confirming “We would pick him today or tomorrow.” ABBAS wrote, “I will take care of the team also after they pick him up.” KYARI confirmed “Yes ooo.”
“ABBAS planned to pay the Nigeria Police Force officers who arrested CHIBUZO for that service. This was not the only time that ABBAS arranged payments with KYARI.
“On May 20, 2020, ABBAS sent KYARI transaction receipts for two transactions from accounts at Nigerian banks (GTBank and Zenith Bank) of a person ABBAS knew in the U.A.E.—a person also arrested with ABBAS in ABBAS’ apartment in the U.A.E. by Dubai Police on June 9, 2020—to the Nigerian bank accounts of another person in Nigeria. The amounts on the transaction receipts totaled 8 million Nigerian Naira, which was approximately $20,600 based on publicly available exchange rate information.
“…on January 20, 2020, KYARI sent to ABBAS biographical, identifying information for CHIBUZO, along with a photograph of him. In a conversation immediately following, ABBAS confirmed “that is him sir.”
“KYARI stated, “We have arrested the guy . . . He is in my Cell now. This is his picture after we arrested him today.
“KYARI sent the biographical information about, and photograph of, CHIBUZO to ABBAS using two different WhatsApp numbers—the second of which KYARI said was his “private number.” From that point on, KYARI and ABBAS primarily discussed the arrest and detention of KYARI through WhatsApp on this “private number.”
“After receiving the photograph of CHIBUZO, ABBAS stated, “I want him to go through the serious beating of his life.” KYARI responded, “Hahahaha,” and ABBAS replied, “Seriously sir.” KYARI then asked for details about what CHIBUZO did “on audio,” which KYARI said was “So that we will know what to do.”
“In response to KYARI’s question about what CHIBUZO had done to ABBAS, ABBAS sent KYARI an audio message, which is transcribed here, describing how CHIBUZO had tried to steal away a fraud victim (i.e., “the job”) from him: “What he did is, I have one job. The job want to pay me 500, umm, 75,000 dollars [i.e., $575,000]. He went to message the job behind me because I told him to help me make one document for me to give the job. Then he went—he has a—I gave him the details. Then he went to message the job behind my back and try to divert the money and in this process, he tell the job because of the documents he gave me that I gave the job, he tell the job, “These document they sent to you before. These people are fake. This money—is me who can help you to get it. Come to me le—bring this money you want to pay these people to me. I’m the only one who can help you,” and all these things to divert the job for himself.
“After listening to the message, KYARI wrote, “Ok I understand. But he has not succeeded.” ABBAS claimed CHIBUZO had taken some money, and provided KYARI with two screenshots, one of which contained the phone number 3054405586 (the phone number CHIBUZO used to contact the Victim Businessperson). The screenshots showed a person contacting the Victim Businessperson and stating that he was providing information to try to “help” the Victim Businessperson. KYARI responded, “Yeah I understand.” KYARI did not request other information or evidence relating to CHIBUZO’s role in the scheme, ask questions about the nature of the transaction, or ask about why CHIBUZO told the Victim Businessperson that ABBAS was “fake.”
“ABBAS then told KYARI, “Now the [Victim Businessperson] was skeptic to pay me the money cos he keep attacking the [Victim Businessperson] from his end. Now I can handle the [Victim Businessperson] correctly.” ABBAS further told KYARI that he wanted to pay money to send CHIBUZO to jail for a long time, stating “Please sir I want to spend money to send this boy to jail, let him go for a very long time.” KYARI responded, “Ok bro, I understand. I will discuss with my team who arrested him . . . And handling the case. We will do something about it.”
“ABBAS responded, “Let me know how I can send money to the team sir. let them deal with him like armed robber.” KYARI responded, “OK I will send their account details to u.” ABBAS further wrote, “He betray me and try to take food out my mouth, this is great punishable sin,” and KYARI responded, “Yeah bro.” ABBAS then continued, “I want him to suffer for many years.” KYARI responded, “Hahahaha…Hahahaha.”
“Approximately six minutes later, KYARI provided the account information for a bank account at a Nigerian bank, Zenith Bank, in the name of a person other than KYARI himself. ABBAS responded “Ok sir, tomorrow by noon,” indicating that he would make the payment to KYARI’s team by the next day.
“Approximately a month later, on February 19, 2020, KYARI sent a message to ABBAS, saying, “Hello hush with [sic] need to talk about the subject under detention with me.” ABBAS asked “Should I call u on this number sir?” to which KYARI replied, “Yes call me.”
“The following day, KYARI sent ABBAS multiple photographs of CHIBUZO to ABBAS, including close-up photographs showing a rash or skin disease on CHIBUZO’s torso and arms. ABBAS responded, “I don pity am, make them leave am from Tuesday.” KYARI wrote, “Ok bro, they just brought him from the hospital. The fever and the rashes is giving him serious Wahala. He got the disease from other suspects in the cell.” ABBAS responded, “I see am, I no too pity am. That’s what people like him deserve but I go forgive am for God sake.”
“In other words, based on my training and experience with Nigerian Pidgin, ABBAS was essentially stating, in part, “I don’t pity him. That’s what people like him deserve, but I will forgive him for God’s sake.”
“Based on the date of the messages and later discussion described in paragraph 150, ABBAS was—on Thursday, February 20, 2020-requesting that KYARI not to release CHIBUZO until Tuesday, February 25, 2020.
“ABBAS then told KYARI that CHIBUZO’s girlfriend messaged him, trying to raise one million Naira to secure CHIBUZO’s release, and said ABBAS promised to contribute 100,000 Naira. KYARI stated “They were thinking it’s normal arrest that is why they think money can remove him . . . No money can remove him here. Hahahaha.” ABBAS added, “But it’s better for them to think that way, I like it like that,” and KYARI responded, “Yeah.”
“ABBAS then said, “No problem sir from Tuesday he can go,” apparently giving KYARI his blessing to release CHIBUZO from custody. KYARI responded, “Ok bro. We will also keep his phone and other gadgets for some weeks.” ABBAS responded, “Yes those ones they should not give him again, those ones are gone . . . Make he no see those ones again for life,” instructing KYARI not to return CHIBUZO’s electronic devices. KYARI responded, “Yes he will not see it [¶] Again,” indicating that he would accede to ABBAS’ request.
“ABBAS Defrauded the Victim Businessperson of an Additional $180,000
“On February 14, 2020—shortly after JUMA had told ABBAS that he would not share the $299,983.58 that he had received from the Victim Businessperson with ABBAS—the Victim Businessperson confided in ABBAS, who was still pretending to be “Malik” the Wells Fargo banker, that she/he believed JUMA had been scamming her/him. ABBAS claimed to be surprised and falsely.”