The suspects are Samuel Ogoshi, 22; Samson Ogoshi, 20; and Ezekiel Ejehem Robert, 19. The suspects are said to be residing in Lagos, Nigeria.
The US Department of Justice, in a statement recently published on its website, said one of the suspects (Samuel Ogoshi) was charged with causing the death of Jordan DeMay, a 17-year-old American.
The charge carries a maximum penalty of life in prison and a statutory mandatory minimum of 30 years in prison.
The justice department said DeMay was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound on March 25, 2022.The teenager’s death was said to have prompted an investigation by the Marquette County Sheriff’s Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), which culminated in the unsealing of the indictment against the three suspects.
In the statement, the US said the three men allegedly bought hacked social media accounts and used the accounts to pose as young women to lure teenage and young adult males into sexual chats.
The US said while the men were in contact with the victims, they searched the internet for information about where the victims lived, where they went to school or worked, and who their family and friends were.
“The grand jury alleges that the defendants then solicited their victims to produce and send sexually explicit images of themselves,” the US DoJ said.
“Once the defendants received sexually explicit images, they created collages that included the sexually explicit image alongside other images of the victims from social media, including images of the victims’ school, family, and friends.
“The defendants then threatened to disclose the collages to others, including the family, friends, and classmates, of their victims via social media unless the victims paid money.
“The grand jury alleges the defendants engaged in this extortion and attempted extortion of more than 100 people.”
All three men have been charged with the following:
· Conspiracy to sexually exploit minors by causing the minors to produce child pornographic images that the defendants then used to blackmail the minors. (maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and a mandatory minimum of 15 years in prison)
· Conspiracy to distribute child pornography by sending child pornography images to minors, as well as their families and friends. (maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison)
· Conspiracy to commit stalking through the internet for engaging in this sextortion scheme related to minors and young adults. (maximum penalty of five years in prison)
The US said although the three suspects have been arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the timeline for their extradition and a date for their appearance in the country is unknown.
The US also said the FBI referred information to the EFCC about three additional Nigerian males involved in the same sextortion ring.
These individuals were said to have been arrested by the EFCC.