An influencer has been extradited to the United States after a million pound romance scam saw her target older, single men for their cash.
Making off with an alleged £1.6million, Ghanaian social media influencer Mona Faiz Montrage, 30, has been accused of appearing in a number of romance schemes.
Montrage is believed to have targeted the older, single men and women who lived alone, and was seemingly a member of a con artist group from 2013 to 2019.
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Boasting 3.4million Instagram followers at her peak on Hajia4Reall, Montrage is said to have utilised fake identities and tricked her victims into believing they were in a relationship with her through emails and texts.
Members of the scam group would have their victims transfer money under bogus pretenses, moving gold from the US to overseas or to head up payments to fake US Army officers in Afghanistan.
Court documents procured by New York Post revealed Montrage is accused of targeting one victim a total of 82 separate times, with wire transfers adding up to £71,000 ($89,000).
Her alleged haul of cash from just one victim came on the pretext of needing the money to help her father's farm in Ghana.
She had tricked her victim into believing they were married, sending off a tribal marriage certificate after a series of phone calls using her real identity, court filings show.
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Bank accounts were allegedly opened by the scammer, with one named 4Reall Designs, a supposed clothing company acting as a laundering unit for the scammed cash.
US Attorney Damian Williams said: "As alleged, Mona Faiz Montrage was a member of a criminal conspiracy that specifically targeted older Americans through romance scams.
"These scams can be both financially and emotionally devastating for vulnerable victims. Thanks to the efforts of our law enforcement partners, Montrage was arrested abroad and has been brought to the United States to face justice."
Montrage pleaded not guilty to charges of wire fraud, money laundering, receipt of stolen money and conspiracy, facing up to 20 years in prison.
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