Support The Moscow Times!

Fraudsters Caught Posing as Russian Oil Executives

The Russian Interior Ministry announced Monday it had dismantled a network of fraudsters who allegedly extorted funds from a Singaporean firm by posing as a director of a major Russian oil company.

The suspects created a fictitious email account that resembled that of one of the Russian company's directors in September 2013, and embarked on negotiations with a Singaporean firm that was seeking to purchase oil.

The scammers allegedly forged the Russian company's seal and signed a $2 million agreement with the Singaporean enterprise, which provided them in January with an advance payment of $500,000.

Russian police have detained four suspects in connection with the case: two residents of Moscow, a Nigerian national and a citizen of South Africa. Forged documents, computer equipment and communications devices were recovered at the suspects' apartments across Moscow during a police search, the ministry said in a statement.

Russia's law enforcement authorities busted a criminal network in 2012, arresting nine Nigerian and Cameroonian nationals who allegedly used the names of major Russian state companies to steal 900 million rubles ($23.5 million) from foreign firms.

Read more

The need for honest and objective information on Russia is more relevant now than ever before!

To keep our newsroom in Moscow running, we need your support.