Nnamdi Chizuba Anisiobi, age 31, of Nigeria; Anthony Friday Ehis, age 34, of Senegal; and Kesandu Egwuonwu, age 35, of Nigeria have pleaded guilty to charges related to spam e-mail that promised U.S. victims millions of dollars from an estate and a lottery, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Wednesday. The three were arrested in Amsterdam on Feb, 21, 2006. One of the case scenarios was an e-mail sent by the defendants to thousands of potential victims purporting to be from an individual suffering from terminal throat cancer who needed assistance distributing approximately US$55 million to charity. According to the DOJ, the fraud victims lost $1.2 million by giving the defendants advance fees. "Anisiobi pled guilty to one count of conspiracy, eight counts of wire fraud and one count of mail fraud. Ehis pled guilty to one count of conspiracy and five counts of wire fraud. Egwuonwu pled guilty to one count of conspiracy, three counts of wire fraud and one count of mail fraud. The maximum penalty for mail and wire fraud is 20 years in prison. The conspiracy charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison." A fourth defendant, Lenn Nwokeafor, was also reported to have fled to Nigeria. He was subsequently arrested by the Nigerian Economic & Financial Crimes Commission on July 27, 2006, and is now being held by the Nigerian authorities pending extradition to the U.S..
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