Often, the pursuit of greener pastures among the enterprising populace of the Nigerian working class leads to exploration into foreign shores where the United States of America [USA] has become the primary choice of depot. And within the USA, the city of Houston in the State of Texas has proved conducive for the Nigerian immigrants judging by the population density. Available historic data also points to the concentration of Nigerians in Houston as partially responsible for a steady ramp up in white collar crimes.
Information available through documentary evidence indicate that a close associate to the President’s Senior Advisor, Senator Ben Obi – a man by the name Ichie Okey Tony Nweke who resides in the city of Houston and employed by the city of Houston under the Environmental Services sector and Chairman of Ndi Ichie Cultural Group in Houston – is said to have plotted to swindle the former Chairman of the Police Service Commission, Dr. Simon Okeke out of a home – under the guise of purchasing a home for the former Chairman of PSC.
Ichie Okey Tony Nweke hails from Awka, the capital of Anambra State – he is the cousin to the sacked Board of Directors of Anambra State Association in the USA, Engr. Sabi Nweke.
Ichie Nweke’s housing scam ordeal began in 1988 when Dr. Simon Okeke served as a private citizen for a firm, KF&R – and had wanted to purchase a home in Houston Texas. Dr. Okeke was introduced to Ichie Nweke through Mazi Peter Nwankwo who was a friend and a partner in the firm [KF&R]. Mazi Peter Nwankwo was also married to Ichie Nweke’s sister, Ngozi. For this reason, Dr. Okeke trusted Ichie Nweke to aide him purchase the said home.
The plan was that Ichie Nweke’s name will be used to purchase a home in Houston for Dr. Okeke – since Dr. Okeke was not resident in the USA – and so did not have the credit history necessary to purchase a home in the USA. Dr. Simon Okeke was to provide the funds for the purchase.
In August of 1988, Ichie Nweke alerted Dr. Okeke that a property had been found. The property was located at No. 8110 Windy Dunes, Houston. Dr. Okeke gave the go ahead and released the necessary funds to Ichie Nweke to make the purchase. But the purchase was not made owing to reasons best known to Ichie Nweke. The money was not refunded to Dr. Okeke.
Through Peter Nwankwo’s intervention, Dr. Simon Okeke decided to give it a second try – for Ichie Nweke to use the money to purchase another property. Within weeks, another property located at 11711 N. Michael Circle, Houston, Texas, 770771 was sighted – priced at $53,950. Dr. Okeke agreed to the purchase – and thus gave the go ahead to his London based lawyer, Nelson Cuff of Harrow, Middlesex to issue a power of attorney to Ichie Nweke to act on his behalf to purchase the property. And so, the property was purchased. The down payment for the house was $10,000 – paid by Dr. Simon Okeke.
The property was purchased under the name of Ichie Nweke and his wife, Obiananma – and it was then agreed that both Ichie and his wife would relocate from their dilapidated rent apartment located at 10003 Forum West 315 Houston, Texas, 77036 into Dr. Simon Okeke’s new house. It was agreed that the Nweke’s will pay a rent to Dr. Simon Okeke – which valued at the time to be less than what the Nweke’s were paying as rent in their former apartment. The rent was pegged at the same value as the mortgage of the house. In all, the Nweke’s and Dr. Simon Okeke agreed that the Nweke would pay the mortgage as their rent. And in turn, all structural expenses incurred in the house will be paid for by Dr. Simon Okeke.
In February of 1994, Dr. Simon Okeke sought to refinance the property – having been informed of the reduced interest rates on mortgages. Dr. Okeke hired a mortgage consultant – Cy Uchendu – to help facilitate the refinancing. The mortgage was successfully refinanced – resulting in the reduction of monthly mortgage from $674 to $661 – and from 25years of payment to 15years. Ichie Nweke was also grateful for the reduced monthly payments on him. He even drafted a handwritten letter to that effect – stating that the property had been refinanced as instructed – and he needed a little more time to affect the transfer of ownership.
However, Ichie Okey Tony Nweke criminal tendencies began to exhibit its strips when Dr. Simon Okeke called on him to transfer the property to his wife – who was now stationed in the USA for a work assignment and needed a home. Dr. Simon Okeke had asked for Nweke to transfer the ownership to his wife, Vivian and to his son, Chuma – who was also schooling in New York. But Ichie Nweke bluntly refused to affect the transfer.
Dr. Simon Okeke – having noticed a possible wrong signal – boarded a flight to Houston Texas to meet with Ichie Tony Okey Nweke. Between May 2005 and May 2006, Dr. Simon Okeke visit Houston four times for the sole purpose of affecting the transfer – but Ichie Nweke hid behind excuses of why he was not able to meet up for a scheduled appointment to discuss the transfer.
On May 26, 2006, Dr. Simon Okeke visited Houston again. This time, in the company of his lawyer and nephew, Barrister Charles Maduka, he summoned Ichie Nweke to his Hilton Hotel room to come discuss the transfer issue. He was asked to come with his wife – who was also a signatory to the house. He agreed. But as he arrived, he did not come with his wife. He came with his elder brother instead. And so, when the issue of transfer came up, Ichie stated that his hands were tied – that he is not able to discuss the transfer in the absence of his wife. As a result, the discussion failed to carry through.
Several calls and correspondences were put through to Ichie Nweke – which he failed/refused to acknowledge or respond to.
Ichie Nweke’s criminal intent became clear when Dr. Simon Okeke’s son [Chuma] took up the courage to visit Ichie Tony Nweke at the said home in Houston. Upon arrival, the duo of Ichie Nweke and his wife were not home. But Ichie Nweke’s son was home. When Chuma Okeke knocked on the door, Nweke’s son opened and let Chuma into the house. While inside the house, Chuma requested to reach Ichie Nweke via the telephone – and the son dialed his father’s phone – via the house landline. When Ichie Nweke picked the call, he spoke to Chuma not realizing he was speaking to the son of Dr. Simon Okeke. When Chuma introduced himself, Ichie Nweke hung up the phone.
As Ichie began exhibiting criminal tendencies, Dr. Simon Okeke decided to conduct further investigation into the situation. The cursory investigation revealed that Ichie Nweke had [unknowing to Okeke] been using the property as collateral to secure loans from financial institutions – to the tune of $63,000 on May 2003.
Meanwhile, adding muster to the Ichie Nweke criminal tendencies – was the fact the he [Ichie Nweke] never expressed interest in the said properties. In two handwritten letters to Dr. Simon Okeke dated January 24, 1993 and August 9, 1994, he wrote detailing the expenses they had put into the house – which he referred to as Dr. Simon Okeke’s house. He summed his expenses as totaling $3761 – and requested for the money to be refunded. The money was refunded on January 1995 through a payment into his bank at Bank One account number 722-00-35-22 located at 11310 Chaney Rock, Houston, Texas 77035.
[See the two enclosed letters below]