BOSTON – A Framingham man was sentenced yesterday for his role in the Business Email Conformity (BEC) scheme.
27-year-old Gustaf Njei was sentenced by US District Court Chief Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV was sentenced to 27 months in prison and two years of supervised release. NJ was ordered to pay $94,630 in damages. In the year In December 2022, NJ was indicted by a federal jury on two counts of wire fraud, one count of structuring to avoid reporting requirements, one count of wire fraud, and one count of money laundering conspiracy.
Njei established a bank account under the fictitious business name “Njei Trading” to receive the proceeds of the BEC scheme. The BEC scheme is a sophisticated scam that often targets businesses involved in bank transfer payments. The fraud is carried out by compromising legitimate business email accounts through social engineering or computer hacking techniques, and/or “tricking” victim company employees (or other individuals involved in legitimate business transactions) into transferring funds to accounts they control. Fraudsters.
NJ affiliates used hacked and spoofed email accounts to wire the scheme’s victims hundreds of thousands of dollars into bank accounts controlled by NJ. NJ transferred a portion of the funds to an overseas bank account, splitting the remaining funds with an affiliate in the US.
“Since June 2016, victims have lost more than $43 billion to BEC scams like Mr. Neje and his co-conspirators. The network of online criminals who target victims is growing and their tools are getting better every day. This sentence should send a clear message that fraudsters will be identified and held accountable.” United States Attorney Rachel S. Rollins said, “For Mr. NJ knew he was involved in a heinous fraud scheme, but all he cared about was lining his pockets with money stolen from unsuspecting victims. This punishment will make him accountable and we will ensure that the money ordered by the court goes to the victims.
“Scam artists like Gustaf Njei are committing massive fraud and should be held accountable. This sentence does exactly that, even though the damages to the victims in this case cannot be measured in dollars and cents,” said Special Agent in Charge Joseph R. Bonavolonta of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division. “Every year, victims lose billions of dollars in hard-earned money, sleepless nights, and lose their business and credibility. This case shows that the FBI will do everything in its power to find money launderers like Mr. Njei and hold them accountable to the full extent of the law.
US Attorney Rollins and FBI SAC Bonavolonta made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorneys William B. Brady and Benjamin A. Salzman of the Rollins Criminal Division prosecuted the case.