Prominent Jamaican disk jockey, ZJ Wah Wa has been accused in an ongoing investigation into a lottery scam targeting elderly victims in the Dakotas and elsewhere, federal officials said Tuesday.
Deon-ville O’Hara, also known as ZJ Wah Wa, is among 26 people who in the last year have been indicted by federal grand jury in North Dakota.
He is charged with three counts, including conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, and money laundering.
Each count carries a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison.
O’Hara and others allegedly ran a lottery scam in Jamaica that induced elderly victims throughout the United States to send millions of dollars to them to cover fees for lottery winnings. O’Hara would travel to the U.S. to pick up money from victims, prosecutors said.
O’Hara was stopped by Jamaican customs officials at Sangster International Airport in November with $105,000 in U.S. currency in his possession. Investigators said the cash was proceeds from the scheme.
O’Hara wasn’t arrested by U.S. authorities until earlier this month when he was visiting Florida. He is currently jailed in the Miami area.
Attorney Herman Frank Rubio Jr., who was appointed to represent O’Hara for his initial court appearance in Florida, told The Associated Press Tuesday that O’Hara has agreed to be transferred to North Dakota. Rubio had no further comment.