Federal prosecutors announced on Monday that Ghanaian-born social media influencer Mona Faiz Montrose has been extradited from the UK to New York for allegedly defrauding American men and women of more than $2 million through long-distance love affairs. Has gone.
The 30-year-old defendant appeared in Manhattan federal court Monday for her alleged involvement in a series of romance schemes targeting older people living alone, prosecutors said in a statement.
The New York Post said he was charged with wire fraud, money laundering, receiving stolen money and conspiracy and could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted on the main charges.
Social Media influencer Mona Faiz Montrage (Mona 4Reall) has been extradited from the United Kingdom to the U.S. for allegedly stealing over $2 million from older and single Americans in a twisted lonely hearts scam 😳 pic.twitter.com/7zAVIjpkiv
— Daily Loud (@DailyLoud) May 15, 2023
Faiz Montrage has around 4.2 million followers on Instagram from his @Hajia4Reall account, which is in the top 10 most followed in Ghana. According to prosecutors, from at least 2013 to 2019, she was involved with a group of West African scammers who used email, text and social media messages to trick people into thinking they were in a relationship with them.
The scammers then wired money to victims under false pretenses, such as helping transport gold from overseas into the US, soliciting fake FBI investigations, and paying for bogus US military officers to help in Afghanistan, court documents allege. Is.
In one case, he allegedly tricked a victim into sending himself $89,000 via 82 wire transfers under the guise of helping out on his father’s farm in Ghana.
“As alleged, Mona Faiz Montrose was a member of a criminal conspiracy that specifically targeted older Americans through a romance scam,” Manhattan US Attorney Damian Williams said in the statement. “These scams can be financially and emotionally devastating for vulnerable victims.”
FaZe Montraz was arrested for alleged conspiracy in the UK on November 10, 2022 and extradited to the US on Friday. She pleaded “not guilty” during her court appearance and is set to remain under house arrest at her aunt’s New Jersey residence in the coming days on $500,000 bail and with GPS tracking through security monitoring I went. Ankle, his attorney and prosecutor’s office confirmed.