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Nigerian National Ordered to Pay Restitution for Role in Fraud and Money Laundering Scheme

Publication date: 
Tuesday, November 15, 2022

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – John Nassy, 29, a Nigerian national living in Dumfries, Virginia, was sentenced to five years of federal probation, including six months on home detention, and ordered to pay $148,000 in restitution for receipt of stolen money in connection with a scheme that defrauded at least 200 victims, many of whom are elderly, of at least $2.5 million. Nassy has already paid $40,000 of the restitution he owes.

According to court documents and statements made in court, Nassy participated in the scheme from June 2018 until at least May 2019 while living in Huntington. The scheme targeted individuals through dating websites and other social media platforms. Scheme participants created false personas to contact victims and induce them into believing they were in a romantic relationship, friendship or business relationship. The victims were persuaded to send money for a variety of false and fraudulent reasons for the benefit of the false personas.

Nassy admitted that he let victims transfer at least $148,000 to his bank accounts that he knew was from unlawful activity.  Nassy further admitted that after the victims’ funds were deposited in his accounts, he kept some of the money for himself and forwarded some of the money to his co-conspirators via the Zelle digital payments network. Nassy also transferred money to bank accounts located in Nigeria.

United States Attorney Will Thompson made the announcement and commended the investigative work of the United States Secret Service, the United States Postal Inspection Service, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation-Office of Inspector General (FDIC-OIG), the West Virginia State Police and the South Charleston Police Department.

United States District Judge Robert C. Chambers imposed the sentence. Assistant United States Attorney Kathleen Robeson prosecuted the case.

The public is encouraged to report potential online fraud activity or scams at

If you or someone you know is age 60 or older and has been a victim of financial fraud, help is standing by at the National Elder Fraud Hotline: 1-833-FRAUD-11 (1-833-372-8311).  This U.S. Department of Justice hotline, managed by the Office for Victims of Crime, is staffed by experienced professionals who provide personalized support to callers by assessing the needs of the victim, and identifying relevant next steps.  Case managers will identify appropriate reporting agencies, provide information to callers to assist them in reporting, connect callers directly with appropriate agencies, and provide resources and referrals, on a case-by-case basis.  Reporting is the first step.  Reporting can help authorities identify those who commit fraud and reporting certain financial losses due to fraud as soon as possible can increase the likelihood of recovering losses.  The hotline is staffed 10am-6pm Eastern Time, Monday-Friday. English, Spanish, and other languages are available. 

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia. Related court documents and information can be found on PACER by searching for Case No. 3:21-cr-68.




Additional Details
USAO - West Virginia, Southern;
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation OIG