Prosperity in a Middle Name

A Nigerian national living in Missouri was sentenced to four years and three months in prison without parole for filing false tax returns and for his participation in various fraudulent internet scams.

Segun Prosper Otaru, 27, was ordered to pay $26,056 in restitution and the same amount to the government. He entered the United States on a student visa in 2013 but failed to take classes. Since arriving in the US, he has worked with an organized crime network, using 13 aliases and numerous bank accounts with fake identities. Otaru admitted to fraud through various internet scams. Among them were rental property listings on Craigslist that Otaru and his co-conspirators did not control. When victims responded they were asked to send a deposit to hold the rental property.

Otaru also filed as many as 167 false income tax returns that included stolen identities, false employers, wages and employment taxes paid. He and a partner received $24,356 in illegal tax refunds.

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