Abidemi Rufai, an aide to Ogun state governor, Dapo Abiodun, has pleaded guilty to a $350,000 wire fraud in the United States.
The aide who has since been suspended by the governor was arrested at New York’s JFK Airport on his way to Nigeria in May, 2021.
In a statement on Tuesday, the US Department of Justice said Rufai admitted using stolen identities to receive thousands of dollars in pandemic-related unemployment benefits.
He was also admitted to have since 2017 obtained identifying information for more than 20,000 Americans, submitted $2 million in claims for disaster relief and other federal benefits, and received more than $600,000,
The largest amount of fraud was committed against the Washington state employment security department, which paid out $350,763 in fraudulent pandemic unemployment claims to accounts controlled by Rufai.