Three Nigerian men are facing extradition after being indicted for sexually extorting multiple young men and teenage boys in the United States. One of their victims was Jordan DeMay, a Marquette High School student who committed suicide as a result of the cyber “sextortion” plot.
The indictment, unsealed on Wednesday by U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Michigan Mark Totten in a press conference, alleges that the defendants posed as young women on social media to lure their victims into sexual chats. They then used the victims’ personal information to create collages that included sexually explicit images of the victims, which they threatened to disclose unless the victims paid them money. The grand jury alleges that the defendants engaged in this extortion and attempted extortion of over 100 people, and that one of the defendants caused the death of DeMay. DeMay’s death prompted an investigation by the Marquette County Sheriff’s Department and the FBI, which led to the indictment.
“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.”
The defendants were arrested by the Nigerian law enforcement agency EFCC, after a cooperative investigation with FBI Michigan agents earlier this year.
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 five 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 five years in prison.
The three men will be extradited to Michigan at a future date and will be prosecuted in federal court. Totten serves as the U.S. District Attorney for the Western District of Michigan, which includes all of the Upper Peninsula. The death also had numerous impacts in the MARESA Intermediate School District, which includes Marquette and Alger Counties.