The Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) has asked citizens indicted in the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) probe to voluntarily turn themselves in or risk being extradited to the US.
The FBI listed at least 77 Nigerians in what it described as one of the largest fraud cases in US history.
Nick Hanna, a US attorney, had said investigations which began since 2016 showed that the suspects colluded with federal and state agents to dupe unsuspecting victims of their money.
In a statement issued on Friday, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, chairman of the commission, said while those fingered are still innocent until proven guilty, they should voluntarily turn themselves in to the US authorities to clear their names.
“We acknowledge the fact that accusation does not mean guilt, and we hope that all the accused will be given fair and speedy trial,” it said.
“We also ask those accused in Nigeria to voluntarily turn themselves in to American authorities to clear their names without which the Nigerian government should extradite them if relevant international treaties between the two governments are invoked.
“While such actions ultimately have negative effect on the image of the country, the commission, however, reiterates as it has always done, that the actions of a few Nigerians involved in criminal activities is not and can never be what the majority of Nigerians represent.”
The commission added that it would continue to monitor the developments closely.