3 Nigerian men charged in ‘Sextortion’ ring and Jordan DeMay death
MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - *Warning* the content of this story may contain information that could be disturbing to some viewers.
Three Nigerian men are awaiting extradition for committing sexual extortion and causing the death of Jordan DeMay.
U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Michigan Mark Totten announced Wednesday the unsealing of a federal indictment charging three Nigerian men with sexually extorting numerous young men and teenage boys in the Western District of Michigan and across the United States. One of those men is being charged with causing the death of Jordan DeMay, of Marquette, Michigan.
On March 25, 2022, 17-year-old DeMay was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. His death prompted an investigation by the Marquette County Sheriff’s Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which culminated in the indictment unsealed Wednesday.
The defendants, Samuel Ogoshi, 22, Samson Ogoshi, 20, and Ezekiel Ejehem Robert, 19, all of Lagos, Nigeria, are charged in a four-count indictment:
- Count 1 charges Samuel Ogoshi with Sexual Exploitation and Attempted Sexual Exploitation of a Minor Resulting in Death in association with the death of Jordan DeMay. The charge carries a maximum penalty of life in prison and a statutory mandatory minimum of 30 years in prison.
- Count 2 charges all three men with Conspiracy to Sexually Exploit Minors by causing the minors to produce child pornographic images that the defendants then used to blackmail the minors. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and a mandatory minimum of 15 years in prison.
- Count 3 charges all three men with Conspiracy to Distribute Child Pornography for sending the child pornography images to the minors, as well as their families and friends. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a mandatory minimum penalty of 5 years in prison.
- Count 4 charges Conspiracy to Commit Stalking Through the Internet for engaging in this sextortion scheme as it relates to both minors and young adults. The charge has a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison.
All charges have provisions for fines, restitution, and supervised release after their release from prison.
“Sextortion is a horrible crime that can leave especially younger victims feeling ashamed with nowhere to turn,” said U.S. Attorney Mark Totten. “My heart goes out to the family of Jordan DeMay. Nothing can bring Jordan back, but my office is committed to securing justice and, alongside Jordan’s family, sending an urgent warning so others can protect themselves and their families. We will travel the world to hold the perpetrators of these crimes accountable.”
“Financial sextortion is a global crisis that impacts teens in our country and around the globe,” said James A. Tarasca, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Michigan. “That’s why the FBI is working hand in hand with our domestic and international law enforcement partners to prevent youth from becoming victims of this tragic crime and to hold those who target our teens in this manner accountable – no matter where in the world they may be.”
Jordan DeMay’s family made a statement at the press conference on Wednesday, saying, “Our family has forever been changed by this heinous crime and our objective is to prevent another individual from being victimized. Kids, teenagers, young adults and even adults can be a target of sextortion. We urge you to have discussions about this and have a plan for your children to reach out if it does happen to them.”
The full statement from the family can be read here.
The grand jury alleges that the defendants bought hacked social media accounts and used the accounts to pose as young women to lure teenage and young adult males into sexual chats. One of the accounts used was an Instagram account bearing the user name “dani.robertts”, which communicated with Jordan DeMay shortly before his death. After initiating chat conversations with the victims, the defendants simultaneously used Google and other online applications to research information about the victims, including where the victims lived, where they went to school or worked, and who their family and friends were.
The grand jury alleges that the defendants then solicited their victims to produce and send sexually explicit images of themselves. Once the defendants received sexually explicit images, they created collages that included the sexually explicit image alongside other images of the victims from social media, including images of the victims’ school, family, and friends. The defendants then threatened to disclose the collages to others, including the family, friends, and classmates, of their victims via social media unless the victims paid money. The grand jury alleges the defendants engaged in this extortion and attempted extortion of more than 100 people.
The grand jury alleges that on March 25, 2022, after DeMay was persuaded to send a naked picture of himself, Samuel Ogoshi used the dani.robertts account to extort him. The chat exchange between DeMay (Victim 1) and Samuel Ogoshi, which led to DeMay’s death, has been released:
dani.robertts: I have screenshot all ur followers and tags can send this nudes to everyone and also send your nudes to your Family and friends Until it goes viral…All you’ve to do is to cooperate with me and I won’t expose you
dani.robertts: Are you gonna cooperate with me
dani.robertts: Just pay me rn [Just pay me right now]
dani.robertts: And I won’t expose you
Victim 1: How much
After DeMay paid $300, Samuel Ogoshi made more threats.
dani.robertts: Enjoy your miserable life
Victim 1: I’m kms rn [I’m kill myself right now]
Victim 1: Bc of you [Because of you]
dani.robertts: Do that fast
dani.robertts: Or I’ll make you do it
dani.robertts: I swear to God
The grand jury alleges that also on March 25, 2022, after Victim 2 was induced to send naked picture of himself, the following messages were exchanged with Victim 2:
dani.robertts: Pay me rn [Pay me right now]
dani.robertts: And I’ll end this
dani.robertts: Deal or no deal
Victim 2: I don’t have that kind of money
dani.robertts: I love this
. . .
Victim 2: I have $50 in venmo and a $100 cash
dani.robertts: Now goodbye
dani.robertts: Enjoy your miserable life
Victim 2: Why
dani.robertts: I’ll make this go viral
On March 26, 2022, the following messages were exchanged with Victim 2:
dani.robertts: I will make you regret you life
dani.robertts: I will make u commit suicide
dani.robertts: I promise you I swear
Earlier this year, agents from FBI Michigan travelled to Nigeria to conduct a cooperative investigation with Nigerian law enforcement officials. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), a Nigerian law enforcement agency, arrested Samuel Ogoshi, Samson Ogoshi and Ezekiel Robert.
The three men are facing extradition to the United States to face prosecution. The timeline for their extradition and a date for their appearance in the United States is unknown, but Mark Totten told TV6 they would be extradited to a court in the Western District of Michigan.
During Wednesday’s press conference, Totten and Tarasca emphasized the importance of inter-agency cooperation both inside the U.S. and internationally to solve this case, thanking Marquette County Sheriff Greg Zyburt for his early work as a first responder in DeMay’s case, as well as international agencies like the EFCC for their help.
The FBI referred information to the EFCC regarding three additional Nigerian males involved in this same sextortion ring. These individuals were arrested by the EFCC. The EFCC is one of Nigeria’s national investigative agencies and is responsible for the investigation of all financial crimes, including extortion, fraud, money laundering, and corruption. The cooperation and assistance of the EFCC was essential in apprehending the defendants. U.S. Attorney Totten extends his appreciation and thanks to the EFCC and the Nigerian authorities for their important partnership in this case.
“International cooperation is critical. In the last two years, this coordination has strengthened efforts connected with the extradition, deportation, and mutual legal or other assistance between Nigeria and the United States involving Economic and Financial Crimes,” said EFCC Chairman Abdulrasheed Bawa. “We wish to express our sincere and immense appreciation to the EFCC and the Cyber Crime Team for the cooperation and significant contribution towards the prevention and detection of trans-national crimes.”
U.S. Attorney Totten and SAC Tarasca thanked the following Nigerian partners and institutions for their assistance with this case: Honorable Chairman Chief Executive Abdulrasheed Bawa, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission; Assistant Director and Head of the International Cooperation Department Antoinette Oche-Obe, Central Authority Unit, Office of the Attorney General - Ministry of Justice; Director of Operations Abdulkarim Chukkol, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission; and Principle Prosecutor Pius Akutah, Central Authority Unit, Office of the Attorney General - Ministry of Justice; Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Justice, Nigeria’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC); the Central Authority Unit of Nigeria’s Ministry of Justice; and the Attorney General of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
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