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April 9, 2021
|Contraband, Financial Crimes
Special Agents from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), working jointly with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Caribbean Anti-Money Laundering Alliance (CMLA) seized Thursday $1.28 million in cash from an abandoned vehicle in the Stumpy Beach-area on the west end of St. Thomas, USVI and arrested four men.
March 30, 2021
|Financial Crimes
As the result of an extensive probe by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Los Angeles, supported by multiple federal, state and local law enforcement partners across the U.S., Anuj Mahendrabhai Patel, 31, a.k.a. “Mike” and “Indio,” of Lake Elsinore, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and wire fraud.
March 25, 2021
|COVID-19, Financial Crimes
James Theodore Polzin, 47, of Mesa, was charged by criminal complaint, unsealed Wednesday, after he was ordered detained at a hearing in U.S. District Court, District of Arizona. He is charged with three counts of fraud in connection with major disaster or emergency benefits and three counts of wire fraud.
March 25, 2021
|Financial Crimes
Tomas Yarrington Ruvalcaba, 64, who has been in federal custody since 2018, pleaded guilty in U.S. district court. He admitted to conspiracy to commit money laundering in a pay-to-play type of scheme.
March 23, 2021
|Financial Crimes
Jose Luis De Jongh Atencio (De Jongh), 48, a former procurement officer and manager in Citgo’s Special Projects Group, pleaded guilty in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.
March 19, 2021
|Cyber Crimes, Financial Crimes
Sergey Medvedev, aka “Stells,” “segmed,” and “serjbear,” 33, of Russia, pleaded guilty in the District of Nevada to one count of racketeering conspiracy in June 2020, and was sentenced today to 10 years in prison. Marko Leopard, aka “Leopardmk,” 31, of North Macedonia, pleaded guilty in the District of Nevada to one count of racketeering conspiracy in November 2019 and was sentenced today to five years in prison.
March 19, 2021
|Financial Crimes
Former Maricopa County Assessor Paul Petersen has been sentenced to five years in state prison on March 19, for running an adoption scheme that was unlawfully paid for by Arizona taxpayers following an investigation by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Arizona Department of Public Safety (AZ DPS). This sentence will be in addition to his federal sentence.
March 9, 2021
|Financial Crimes
Mohamed Mokbel, 56, and Fathy Elsafty, 62, both of Houston, were arrested at their Houston-area homes early Tuesday morning. They are expected to make their initial appearances before U.S. Magistrate Judge Andrew Edison at 2 p.m.
January 29, 2021
|Financial Crimes
In a two-count information, Hugo Sergio Mejia, 49, of Ontario, was charged with money laundering and operating an unlicensed money transmitting business. In a plea agreement also filed today, Mejia agreed to plead guilty to these federal felony offenses in in March.
January 13, 2021
|Financial Crimes
Steve Chen, 63, a.k.a. “Li Chen” and “Boss,” of Bradbury, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge John F. Walter, who found that Chen’s “litany of lies” promoted a scam of “epic proportions.” Chen pleaded guilty in June 2020 to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of tax evasion.
January 12, 2021
|Financial Crimes
ICE HSI distributed $164,577.44 in funds forfeited from bulk cash seized to the Maverick County Sheriff’s Department January 12, as part of a federal asset sharing program.
January 7, 2021
|Financial Crimes
Maksims Klopovs admitted he was to be paid for picking up a large load of electronics originally set for delivery to a college in Corpus Christi.
December 17, 2020
|Financial Crimes
Law enforcement arrested Zheng “Miranda” Zhou, 53, of Missouri City, and Kun “Bruce” Liu, 40, of Sugar Land, Dec. 14. Both made their initial appearances in Houston federal court Dec. 15, at which time the criminal indictment was unsealed.
December 10, 2020
|Financial Crimes
The schemes are outlined in a 49-page indictment, which was filed late Wednesday and is the latest case resulting from an operation in Sept. 2014 when law enforcement authorities executed dozens of search warrants as part of an investigation into money laundering and other crimes at Fashion District businesses. During one of those searches at a downtown condominium linked to the defendants in this case, authorities seized more than $38.3 million in cash.
November 16, 2020
|Financial Crimes
Mikayel Hmayakyan, 43, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge George H. Wu, who also ordered him to pay $4,906,534 in restitution.
October 27, 2020
|COVID-19, Financial Crimes
Austin Hsu, 46, of Issaquah, Washington, was charged by criminal complaint, unsealed today after his initial appearance, in the Western District of Washington with one count of wire fraud. He made his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Brian A. Tsuchida.
October 15, 2020
|Financial Crimes
Arsen Khumaryan, 41, of Glendale, pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud. U.S. District Judge John A. Kronstadt has scheduled a January 28 sentencing hearing, at which time Khumaryan will face a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison.
October 8, 2020
|Financial Crimes
“HSI New York’s El Dorado Task Force is uniquely qualified to investigate complex, international money laundering and other serious financial crimes. Working with our law enforcement partners around the country and around the world, we will continue to safeguard our financial systems from international corruption that enriches the coffers of dictators and their cronies. This designation is a clear message – corruption stops at our border,” said Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Director Tony H. Pham.
September 4, 2020
|Financial Crimes

Nan Ma, 37, of Hurricane, Utah, is a Chinese citizen with legal permanent resident status in the United States. He faces a maximum penalty, for each of the three wire fraud counts of, 20 years in federal prison. The six money laundering counts each have a potential maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.

September 3, 2020
|Financial Crimes

As part of the operation that led to the multimillion cash seizure, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers conducted an outbound cargo inspection on board the Motor Vessel Norma H II Voyage 818. During the inspection, a CBP K-9 alerted on pallets containing home moving boxes destined for St. Thomas.

August 26, 2020
|Financial Crimes
Noh, 66, of Bel Air, agreed to plead guilty to one count of conspiracy and one count of subscribing to a false tax return, charges that carry a statutory maximum penalty of eight years in federal prison.
August 13, 2020
|COVID-19, Financial Crimes

These three terror finance campaigns all relied on sophisticated cyber-tools, including the solicitation of cryptocurrency donations from around the world. The action demonstrates how different terrorist groups have similarly adapted their terror finance activities to the cyber age.

August 7, 2020
|Financial Crimes

According to court documents, Brooks Thomas Nesbitt, 37, of Ontario, Canada, was a member of a large, international fraud and money-laundering ring, led by Mary Kathryn Marr. Between at least 2014 and 2019, Nesbitt operated boiler rooms located outside of the United States.

July 31, 2020
|Cyber Crimes, Financial Crimes

Valerian Chiochiu, aka “Onassis,” “Flagler,” “Socrate,” and “Eclessiastes,” 30, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Court Judge James C. Mahan in the District of Nevada. Chiochiu is a national of the Republic of Moldova, but resided in the United States during the period of the conspiracy. His plea came just over a month after the co-founder and administrator of Infraud, Sergey Medvedev of Russia, separately pleaded guilty June 26. Sentencing for Chiochiu has been scheduled for Dec. 11.

July 22, 2020
|Financial Crimes

Kais Mohammad, 36, a.k.a. “Superman29,”, of Yorba Linda, was charged in a three-count criminal information filed today in U.S. District Court. In a plea agreement also filed today, Mohammad agreed to plead guilty to one count of operating an unlicensed money transmitting business, one count of money laundering, and one count of failure to maintain an effective anti-money laundering program.

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Updated: 01/21/2021