A popular influencer with over 2.5 million followers on Instagram has been arrested for defrauding over a dozen people.
Hader Atef was reportedly arrested in the Egyptian capital Cairo after she and her ex-husband, named as Bilal Mahmoud, her sister-in-law and her sister-in-law’s husband were accused by nearly a dozen of having defrauded them of vast sums of cash.
They allegedly told their victims they were going to invest their money in the stock market, promising significant returns, according to local media.
Atef’s mother, who has not been named, had at first taken to social media claiming that her daughter had been “kidnapped”, with the “thugs” also “taking her money”, as well as other valuables – including gold.
She also claimed that Atef’s young daughter had been endangered during the alleged kidnapping.
But the authorities then confirmed that they had arrested Atef over the fraud allegations.
There were also claims from Atef’s husband’s family that he had killed himself but it later emerged that he had been arrested by the authorities too.
The Egyptian Ministry of the Interior said in a statement on Sunday, 11th December, that the “fashion blogger” and her husband, as well as her sister-in-law, had been reported to the Cairo Security Directorate by “sixteen citizens”.
They said that the suspects had promised to invest EGP 1 million (GBP 33,000) for them in “securities trading”, promising significant financial returns.
They also said that “the aforementioned ‘blogger’ promoted on her page on the social networking site Instagram the activities of those companies among her followers.”
The Egyptian authorities said that three of them had been arrested in the Giza governorate, adding that after being confronted, “they confessed to receiving money from the victims amounting to more than one million pounds under the pretext of investing it for them in exchange for profits, but they did not do so or return the original amount.
“Legal measures have been taken, and efforts are being intensified to apprehend the fugitive suspect.”
The investigation is ongoing.