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Financial Crimes
03/26/2012

HSI arrests 3 Puerto Rican women for witness tampering, obstruction, money laundering

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – Three Fajardo, Puerto Rico, residents were arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents earlier this week for money laundering, obstruction, and tampering with a witness in an HSI money laundering investigation.

HSI special agents executed the arrest of Julia Gomez-Calcaño, 53, and Dora Porfil-Colon, 46, on Thursday. Tania de Jesus-Gomez, 27, was arrested on March 17. The three women were charged in two separate indictments.

"These arrests should send a clear message to those who think that tampering with a witness or the obstruction of justice are not serious crimes," said Angel Melendez, special agent in charge of HSI San Juan. "The lack of witness cooperation in criminal cases is, in great part, the reason why some cases, that otherwise would prevail in court, are dismissed. HSI will simply not tolerate obstruction of justice or witness tampering and will seek criminal charges against those who try to hinder an investigation."

According to one of the indictments, Jesus-Gomez and Gomez-Calcaño conspired to commit money laundering and tampering with a witness of an HSI investigation. It was the object of the conspiracy to conceal and disguise drug trafficking proceeds obtained by Julio L. de Jesus-Gomez, now in federal custody, as legitimate income derived from the activities of Luquillo Boat Glass, Inc. The indictment also alleges that, Jesus-Gomez and Gomez-Calcaño, aiding and abetting each other, attempted to corruptly persuade a third person by telling that individual what to respond to law enforcement officers with the intent to hinder the investigation.

Porfil-Colon was charged on a second indictment for concealing documents and other objects belonging to Tania de Jesus-Gomez, with the intent to impair their integrity, obstruct, influence or impede an official proceeding.