Staff Reporter

NEW DELHI: A Nigerian national, who apparently aspired to play for one of the football clubs of Kolkata, has been arrested by the Economic Offences Wing of the Delhi police for allegedly cheating a person of several lakhs of rupees on the pretext of getting him a fake inheritance claim.

Forty-nine-year-old Azhar Holla of Okhla had advertised on bharatmatrimony.com looking for a prospective bride a few months ago. One of the respondents was Sheikhana Nana -- the name later turned out to be a fake -- from Senegal. The two corresponded over e-mails and decided to get married.

The woman then told Mr. Holla that she had an inheritance worth $9.7 million in Senegal and needed his account to transfer the money to India. During the next couple of months, Mr. Holla was asked to pay over Rs. 3 lakhs to fictitious lawyers in United Kingdom as "processing fees" for the transfer. All the transactions were on-line. However, Mr. Holla realised that something was amiss when the woman -- whom he had never met and only talked over the phone -- would come up with excuses for the delay in the transfer of the huge amount into his account.

Mr. Holla then reported the matter to the police and also asked the person to come to Delhi to collect the money as "on-line transfer of such a huge amount was not permitted".

On Monday, the police team laid a trap and arrested the Nigerian national when he came to collect the money from Mr. Holla outside Cafe Coffee Day on Janpath. The accused, identified as Angeli E. Samko, was booked for cheating and criminal conspiracy.

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