COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — A Columbus man pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering after receiving nearly $750,000 in payments.
According to a release by the Internal Revenue Service, Charles Asumadu laundered money from online romance scams and received approximately $744,815.30 in funds. He did so by creating several profiles on online dating and social media sites where he contacted men and women to create affectionate and romantic relationships.
Asumadu and his co-conspirators would then ask for cash or investments from the victims and give account information with instructions to send the money there. He used bank accounts in his name and in the name of companies he controlled, including Dr. C. Asumadu Heath Care Agency and Dealership & Health Care LLC, for the purpose of money laundering.
Asumadu, who was the sole signer on the accounts and entities, funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars collected from the romance scam into his bank accounts. He then moved the money from the United States to Ghana.
Conspiracy to commit money laundering carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. Investigators have looked into at least two other romance scammers through 2022 in central Ohio. One of them laundered nearly $4.3 million, while another funneled $1.3 million.
Better Call 4 has several measures anyone can take to vet someone on a dating app. Learn more here.