10 things to know about Hajia4Real's sentencing in the US
10 things to know about Hajia4Real's sentencing in the US
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10 things to know about Hajia4Real's sentencing in the US

Ghanaian influencer Mona Faiz Montrage, widely known as Hajia4Real, has been sentenced for her involvement in a series of romance frauds. Here are ten key points about the case:

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1. Sentencing Details

Mona Faiz Montrage was sentenced to one year and one day in prison by U.S. District Judge J. Paul Oetken on June 28, 2024. 

2. Guilty Plea

Montrage pled guilty to conspiracy to receive stolen money on February 21, 2024.

3. Criminal Enterprise

From 2013 to 2019, Montrage was part of a West Africa-based criminal enterprise that executed various fraud schemes targeting individuals and businesses in the U.S., including romance scams.

4. Victim profile

The victims were predominantly vulnerable, older men and women who lived alone and were deceived into believing they were in romantic relationships with fabricated identities.

5. Scam tactics

Members of the enterprise used emails, text messages, and social media to gain victims' trust and eventually coerced them into transferring money under false pretenses.

6. Amount defrauded

Montrage controlled bank accounts that received over $2 million in fraudulent funds.

7. Number of victims

Approximately 40 victims were tricked into sending money to Montrage, with false reasons ranging from transporting gold to resolving fake FBI investigations.

8. Social media influence

Montrage gained fame as Hajia4Real on Instagram, with her account reaching about 3.4 million followers, making her one of the top influencers in Ghana.

9. Additional penalties

In addition to her prison term, Montrage was sentenced to three years of supervised release and ordered to forfeit $216,475 and pay $1,387,458 in restitution.

10. Law enforcement efforts

The case was a result of the diligent work by the FBI and was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office's Complex Frauds and Cybercrime Unit, with Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mitzi Steiner and Kevin Mead leading the prosecution.

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams emphasized the harmful impact of such scams, noting that they not only betray the victims' trust but also rob them of their money. The prosecution's successful outcome highlights the commitment of law enforcement to bring fraudsters to justice, regardless of their location.

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