A Nigerian citizen living in Dubai, popularly known as Hushpuppi, who flaunted his extravagant lifestyle on social media on Friday appeared in a United States court to face criminal charges, the US Justice Department announced.
Hushpuppi was alleged to have conspired to launder hundreds of millions of dollars from business email compromise (BEC) frauds and other scams, including schemes targeting a US law firm, a foreign bank and an English Premier League soccer club.
Ramon Olorunwa Abbas, 37, a.k.a. “Ray Hushpuppi” and “Hush,” a Nigerian national, arrived in Chicago on Thursday evening after being expelled from the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Abbas made his initial US court appearance on Friday morning in Chicago and he is expected to be transferred to Los Angeles in the coming weeks.
Abbas (Hushpuppi) was arrested last month by UAE law enforcement officials. FBI special agents earlier this week obtained custody of Abbas and brought him to the United States to face a charge of conspiring to engage in money laundering that is alleged in a criminal complaint filed on June 25 by federal prosecutors in Los Angeles.
According to an affidavit filed with the complaint, Abbas (Hushpuppi) maintains social media accounts that frequently showed him in designer clothes, wearing expensive watches, and posing in or with luxury cars and charter jets.
“The FBI’s investigation has revealed that Abbas finances this opulent lifestyle through crime, and that he is one of the leaders of a transnational network that facilitates computer intrusions, fraudulent schemes (including BEC schemes), and money laundering, targeting victims around the world in schemes designed to steal hundreds of millions of dollars,” according to the affidavit.