Falope Oluwole, a 100-level part-time student of a journalism institute, has been arrested for impersonating Shayla, a U.S. female makeup artist, to dupe not fewer than 33 men.
Oluwole was arrested by the Lagos state police command for extorting male Instagram users who were looking for a relationship,
The alleged fraudster was said to have carried out his activities on Instagram with the handles @blackberbiedoll, @froshwhite007 and @froshwhite.
One of the unsuspecting men duped by Oluwole, simply identified as Bernard, said he became friends with former based on the request he sent to him with a female account.
“Apparently, the picture on the account was that of a lady. The lady in question messaged me on BBM. Honestly, I thought I was chatting with a woman who claimed to be in Nigeria at the time.
“She lied to me that her father was a Nigerian and her mum, a Kenyan. At a point, she lied that she was building a beauty outfit in the Ikota Shopping Mall, VGC, and that she was in need of some money to complete the mall.
“I had to transfer N1m to her. Weeks later, I got suspicious of the account name, Oluwole Israel Oluwaseun Falope. I ran a search on Google and that was when I discovered it was a scam.”
Other victims said they transferred money to “Shayla”, which Oluwole confirmed, saying he got nothing less than N80, 000 from each victim.
In his statement made at the police station, Oluwole said: “When I started, much as I pretended to be a lady on the phone, some men didn’t believe me. I then downloaded an application on Google store, which transformed my voice into that of a lady whenever I had a conversation.
“I got several pictures of Shayla, a pretty US lady, on my profile. Since then, men started disturbing me and calling to request a date.
“What I do is to assess people based on their appearance on Instagram. I add them and thereafter open up conversations with them before I bring up all kinds of stories to dupe them.
“At a point, I lied to most of them that I had an accident and I lost my ATM card. I told them that I needed some money. Some of them were generous enough to send money into my account.
“I even lied to them that I was putting up a boutique and saloon at Ikota, VGC and Lekki, and that I needed money.”
The report further noted that Shayla, the US make-up artist, had lodged some complaints that Nigerians “were using her photos to scam unsuspecting members of the public”.
Items recovered from the suspect included an iPhone 6, a Samsung Galaxy A5, an Apple tablet, hand and neck chains, some cash and a handbag.