Jamaica, May 4, 2017 – Kingston –A total of fifteen suspects all Jamaican nationals have been charged with 66 total counts of conspiracy, mail fraud and money laundering in what is being deemed as a multimillion-dollar Jamaican lottery scam. U.S authorities have reportedly alleged that the scam has defrauded over 90 Americans, most elderly citizens, out of more than U.S $5.7M.
Eight suspects, including a Jamaican ex-police constable, involved in the scam has since been extradited to the United States to face federal charges. Jason Jahalal, Alrick McLeod, Oneil Brown, Xanu Ann Morgan, Dario Palmer, Kazrae Gray, Kimberly Hudson and Dahlia Hunter have each been indicted on one count of conspiracy and attempting to commit wire fraud, 48 counts of wire fraud, 15 counts of mail fraud and one count of money laundering in North Dakota. Lavrick Willock who is being considered the mastermind of the scam, was initially charged in October 2012 but managed to evade the police until his arrest in Kingston last November. He pleaded not guilty on all charges in January 2017. One other defendant is still awaiting extradition to the United States. Another perpetrator is awaiting trail in Rhode Island, while the four others involved, however, remain fugitives.
Though the eight suspects were handcuffed, shackled and taken on a aircraft by the numerous U.S FBI agents, they appeared to have all been in high spirits and were seen smiling and chatting with each other.
Counselor for Public Affairs at the United States Embassy in Kingston, Joshua Polacheck however has stated, “We are 100% confident that they are going to be spending decades in jail.”
Story By: Kay-Marie Fletcher