Residents of New York City may have heard about several high-profile convictions in the Southern District of New York. Two defendants received convictions for money laundering and wire fraud as well as aggravated identity theft.
According to the United States Department of Justice, losses to victims were in excess of $6 million. The defendants were accused of impersonating trusted advisors and stealing from both large and small businesses across the globe. With the help of co-conspirators, they transferred money into bank accounts in different countries.
How did they deposit the money?
While impersonating trusted advisors, the two defendants tricked businesses into depositing millions of dollars in funds to business bank accounts. These accounts were under the control of the two men and their co-conspirators.
After wiring the funds, the two men transferred the money into different bank accounts that had locations across the globe. Nigeria and China were destinations for some of the money in this financial fraud scheme.
The defendants also created fraudulent invoices and contracts. Using stolen identities, they submitted these invoices to banks. This was in support of the wire transfers of these large amounts of money moved into their fraudulent accounts.
What penalties can they receive?
Although sentencing will take place in 2022, Congress has set forth the prison terms. The conviction is for the following:
- Conspiracy to commit wire fraud: Maximum of 20 years
- Conspiracy to commit money laundering: Maximum of 20 years
- One count of identity theft: Mandatory consecutive two years
Financial fraud can be part of a large, international scheme, or it can be a single individual deceiving institutions for personal gain. Creating fake bank accounts and wire fraud as well as identity theft are serious crimes and may receive strong sentencing.