Man Jailed for Phishing Scam Targeting UK Students

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Nigerian Olajide Onikoyi, 29, of Blackley, Manchester, was recently sentenced to three years and nine months in prison for his involvement in a phishing scam targeting students in the UK (h/t Sophos).

The phishing e-mails directed recipients to a fake student loan Web site, where they were prompted to enter their personal information, including their bank details. Onikoyi stole a total of £393,000 from 238 victims, including one who lost £19,000.

Onikoyi pled guilty on December 10, 2013. He was sentenced to three years in prison on a charge of conspiracy to defraud UK financial organizations, and an additional nine months on a charge of money laundering.

The UK's Metropolitan Police colloborated on the investigation with the Student Loans Company, the banking industry, and Internet service providers.

Onikoyi was arrested on January 9, 2013, and his computer was seized. Chat logs on the computer showed that Onikoyi was conspiring with others in Russia, Lithuania and the UK as part of the scheme.

"My officers worked doggedly to secure Onikoyi’s conviction," Detective Chief Inspector Jason Tunn said in a statement. "They examined numerous leads to identify members of this phishing gang, of which Onikoyi was a key member. He played a significant role in the scam by systematically targeting British students and UK financial institutions in order to steal large amounts of money that were then dispersed across numerous bank accounts."