United States Attorney for the Western District of Michigan, Mark Totten has unsealed a federal indictment charging three Nigerians.
The defendants, Samuel Ogoshi, 22; Samson Ogoshi, 20; and Ezekiel Ejehem Robert, 19; all of Lagos, face a four-count indictment.
They are accused of sexually extorting numerous young men and teenage boys in the Western District of Michigan and across the United States.
One of them is charged with causing the death of 17-year-old Jordan DeMay of Marquette, Michigan, who passed on March 25, 2022, after shooting himself.
The teenager’s death prompted an investigation by the Marquette County Sheriff’s Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
In Count 1, Samuel is charged with Sexual Exploitation and Attempted Sexual Exploitation of a minor resulting in death. It carries a maximum penalty of life in prison, minimum of 30 years.
Count 2 charges all three with Conspiracy to Sexually Exploit Minors by causing them to produce child porn images. It carries a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison, minimum of 15 years.
Count 3 charges all three with Conspiracy to Distribute Child Pornography to minors, families and friends. It carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, minimum of 5 years.
Count 4 charges all three Conspiracy to Commit Stalking Through the Internet for engaging in sextortion. The charge has a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison.
U.S. Attorney Mark Totten noted that sextortion is a horrible crime that can leave especially younger victims feeling ashamed with nowhere to turn.
“My heart goes out to the family of Jordan DeMay. Nothing can bring Jordan back, but my office is committed to securing justice,” Totten said.
James A. Tarasca, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Michigan described financial sextortion as “a global crisis” that impacts teens in America other nations.
Tarasca reiterated the commitment of the FBI and law enforcement partners to prevent youth from becoming victims and to hold those culprits accountable.
FBI Agents in Michigan, earlier in 2023, travelled to Nigeria to conduct a cooperative investigation with law enforcement officials.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) already arrested Samuel, Samson and Ezekiel. The trio will be flown to America to face prosecution.
EFCC Chairman Abdulrasheed Bawa said coordination has strengthened efforts on extradition, deportation, as well as mutual legal or other assistance between Nigeria and the U.S.