SHREVEPORT, La. – United States Attorney David C. Joseph announced that Damilola Bamidele Isaac Samuel, 22, a Nigerian citizen, has been sentenced for using fraudulent ATM bank cards to steal $260,726.09 from over two dozen Regions Bank customers, including elderly victims.
On July 20, 2020, Chief U.S. District Judge S. Maurice Hicks Jr. ordered Samuel to serve 33 months in federal prison. Judge Hicks also sentenced Samuel, who pled guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud on December 10, 2019, to pay $276,790.39 in restitution. Following his release from prison, Damilola Samuel will be subject to deportation proceedings.
According to court documents, Samuel conspired with others to steal $260,726.09 from Regions Bank customers using fraudulently obtained ATM debit cards. Samuel carried out an account takeover scheme whereby he fraudulently set up accounts in legitimate bank customer’s names then transferred money from the customer’s legitimate account into those fraudulently created accounts. On multiple occasions, Samuel was captured on surveillance cameras utilizing ATM cards associated with the fraudulent checking accounts.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and Shreveport Police Department conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Leon H. Whitten prosecuted the case.
In March of this year, the Attorney General announced the largest coordinated sweep of elder fraud cases in department history. The Department, together with every U.S. Attorney’s office, charged more than 400 defendants, causing over $1 billion in loss through fraud schemes that largely affected seniors, including this case in the Western District of Louisiana.
The National Elder Fraud Hotline provides services to seniors who may be victims of financial fraud. The Hotline is staffed by experienced case managers who can provide personalized support to callers. Case managers will assist callers with reporting the suspected fraud to relevant agencies and by providing resources and referrals to other appropriate services as needed. When applicable, case managers will complete a complaint form with the Federal Bureau of Investigation Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) for internet-facilitated crimes and submit a consumer complaint to the Federal Trade Commission on behalf of the caller. The Hotline’s toll-free number is 833-FRAUD-11 (833-372-8311).
For more information about DOJ’s efforts to prevent and combat elder abuse, please visit the Elder Justice Website at https://www.justice.gov/elderjustice. The Department of Justice provides a variety of resources relating to elder fraud victimization through its Office of Victims of Crime, which can be reached at www.ovc.gov.
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The year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the Department of Justice. Learn more about the history of our agency at www.Justice.gov/Celebrating150Years.