Criminal Justice News

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

$100 Million Ponzi Scheme Indictment Returned

JACKSONVILLE, FL—United States Attorney Robert E. O'Neill and James Casey, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, announce the unsealing of a 14-count indictment charging Lydia I. Cladek, of St. Augustine, Florida, with wire and mail fraud and conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud. Cladek faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison for each count and a $3.5 million fine. The indictment also notifies Cladek that the United States is seeking the forfeiture of specific assets, including oceanfront property, jewelry, and artwork which are alleged to be traceable to proceeds of the offense. The indictment also notifies the defendant that the United States is seeking a money judgment in the amount of $113,235,968.02, which represents the value of the proceeds of the charged criminal conduct.

According to the indictment, Cladek was the president and sole shareholder of Lydia Cladek, Inc. (LCI), an investment company involved in the purchase of high-interest motor vehicle retail installment contracts. It is alleged that Cladek encouraged investors to loan money to LCI to be used to purchase these high-interest notes with Cladek guaranteeing a return rate of 15 percent to 20 percent on the investment. Cladek would then issue a promissory note secured by the vehicles and the car notes. According to the indictment, Cladek used these funds to support her lifestyle, to acquire property, and to repay other investors to conceal her fraudulent use of the funds.

An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed a violation of the federal criminal laws, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jay Taylor, Jacksonville Division.

Twin Cities Announce Task Force

On April 1, 2010, the Twin Cities Safe Streets Violent Gang Task Force (TCSSVGTF) opened for business. The task force consists of investigators and analysts from the Minneapolis and St. Paul Police Departments, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA), and the Minneapolis FBI Division. Investigators from the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) and some of the FBI agents assigned to the task force participated in MPD's Violent Offender Task Force (VOTF) prior to April 1, 2010. The TCSSVGTF moved into its own office space in Minneapolis during early September 2010.

Plans to create the TCSSVGTF began in January 2009. The task force is funded primarily with federal funds, and overall management of the task force is the responsibility of the FBI. The mission of the TCSSVGTF is to identify and investigate the most violent street gangs operating in the Twin Cities or those gangs trafficking large quantities of illegal drugs. The ultimate goal of the task force is to dismantle those gangs targeted by the task force. Investigations are presented to the U.S. Attorney's office for prosecution, but some investigations are referred to local district attorney offices if they are deemed to be better suited for state prosecution.

In early October 2010, four members of the north Minneapolis-based Beat Down Posse gang were charged in Hennepin County on state charges of making terroristic threats, committing second degree assaults and theft by swindle, and being prohibited persons in possession of firearms. Our hope is that communities affected by gang violence and influence, as we saw in the Beat Down Posse investigation, will become safer and better places for our citizens to live and work.

Seeking Information on Armored Car Robberies

ATLANTA—Special Agent in Charge (SAC) Brian D. Lamkin, FBI Atlanta, requests the public’s assistance in identifying and locating the individuals responsible for today’s armed robbery of a Loomis armored car courier, which occurred at the Wells Fargo Bank, 3520 Centerville Highway, Snellville, Georgia.

On Monday, November 29, 2010, at approximately , a courier for a Loomis Armored Car was robbed at gunpoint while servicing an ATM at the Wells Fargo Bank, located at 
3520 Centerville Highway, Snellville, Georgia
. 

The courier was approached from behind by a single robber who placed a semi automatic handgun to the courier’s head. The robber departed the area with an undisclosed amount of money and was seen getting into the back seat of a light blue or silver vehicle, described as being possibly a Buick, Oldsmobile, or Jaguar. 

The robber is described as being a black male, late 20’s in age, 5’5” to 5’11” in height, medium build, wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and a black cap.

FBI agents are comparing the details of the above robbery to other similar Metro Atlanta area robberies, which include the following:

A September 14, 2010 robbery of a Garda Armored courier while at the Bank of America, located at
1775 Howell Mill Road, Atlanta, Georgia
. Two black males approached the courier while he was servicing an ATM at that location. Both robbers were brandishing semi-automatic handguns. During that robbery, the courier was forced to the ground and his sidearm was taken by the robbers.

An October 7, 2010, robbery of  a Dunbar Armored courier, which occurred inside of a Mex-America Latino store, located at
641 South Marietta Parkway, Marietta, Georgia
  In that robbery, two black males, one with long black dreadlocks, waited inside of the above store for the courier to arrive. Upon arrival, the two robbers confronted the courier with handguns.

A November 11, 2010, robbery of a Dunbar Armored courier while at the Bank of America, located at
1500 Buford Highway, Buford, Georgia
. In that robbery, the courier was robbed while servicing an ATM at that location. The courier was approached from behind by two black male suspects brandishing handguns.One of the robbers was described as having a gold upper tooth. The robbers were seen departing that robbery in a blue Chevrolet Tahoe, recovered shortly after the robbery and determined to have been reported stolen in Atlanta.

Anyone with information regarding this matter should contact the Atlanta office FBI at tel. (404) 679-9000.

‘U-30 Bandit’ Pleads Guilty

BOSTON, MA—A Norwood man dubbed the ‘U-30 Bandit’ by the FBI was convicted today in federal court of eight counts of armed bank robbery.

DIMITRI LONG, 34, pled guilty before U.S. District Judge Douglas P. Woodlock to eight counts of armed bank robbery. Long committed a number of violent bank robberies in spring and summer months of 2009 in the communities of Needham, Wellesley, Newton, Dedham, and Walpole.

Long pled guilty for robberies committed at Bank of America in Wellesley on March 26, 2009, and April 24, 2009; TD Bank in Needham on April 3, 2009; Village Bank in Newton on May 13, 2009; Ukranian Credit Union in Dedham on May 29, 2009; Bank of America in Dedham on June 5, 2009; Sharon Credit Union on June 16, 2009; and Sovereign Bank in Needham on July 1, 2009.

In each of the robberies, Long would enter the bank, brandish a black semi-automatic handgun, and commit the robbery. In three of the eight robberies, Long placed a device which resembled a bomb on the counter. These devices were later determined to be hoax devices. Throughout each robbery, bank employees noted that the robber was communicating with someone outside the bank via a portable walkie-talkie.

Long, who had been a suspect in the above robberies, was captured by the FBI as he exited the Sovereign Bank carrying money and a loaded weapon. The getaway driver, Michael Coty, Long’s half brother, was captured by the FBI immediately thereafter as he fled the scene. Coty was prosecuted for his involvement in three of the eight robberies and was sentenced on October 7, 2010, by Judge Woodlock to 60 months’ imprisonment to be followed by five years of supervised release.

Judge Woodlock scheduled sentencing for February 28, 2011. Long faces up to 25 years’ imprisonment on each count of bank robbery to be followed by five years of supervised release, an $800.00 special assessment, and restitution in the amount of $59,334.00.

United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz and Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division, made the announcement today. The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Violent Crime Task Force, the Norfolk County Police Anti-Crime Unit, and the Wellesley, Needham, Dedham, Newton, and Walpole Police Departments. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kenneth G. Shine of Ortiz’s Major Crime Unit.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Caddo and St. Tammany parishes to benefit from ICE strategy to use biometrics to identify and remove aliens convicted of a crime

ALEXANDRIA, La.-On Tuesday, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) began using a federal information sharing capability in Caddo and St. Tammany parishes that helps federal immigration officials use biometrics to identify aliens, both lawfully and unlawfully present in the United States, who are booked into local law enforcement's custody for a crime. This capability is part of Secure Communities-ICE's comprehensive strategy to improve and modernize the identification and removal of aliens convicted of a crime from the United States.

Previously, biometrics-fingerprints-taken of individuals charged with a crime and booked into custody were checked for criminal history information against the Department of Justice's (DOJ) Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System (IAFIS). Now, through enhanced information sharing between DOJ and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), biometrics submitted through the state to the FBI will be automatically checked against both the FBI criminal history records in IAFIS and the biometrics-based immigration records in DHS's Automated Biometric Identification System (IDENT).

If fingerprints match those of someone in DHS' biometric system, the new automated process notifies ICE. ICE evaluates each case to determine the individual's immigration status and takes appropriate enforcement action. This includes aliens who are in lawful status and those who are present without lawful authority. Once identified through fingerprint matching, ICE will respond with a priority placed on aliens convicted of the most serious crimes first-such as those with convictions for major drug offenses, murder, rape and kidnapping. 

"The Secure Communities strategy provides ICE with an effective tool to identify criminal aliens in local custody," said Secure Communities Assistant Director David Venturella. "Enhancing public safety is at the core of ICE's mission. Our goal is to use biometric information sharing to remove criminal aliens, preventing them from being released back into the community, with little or no additional burden on our law enforcement partners."

With the expansion of the biometric information sharing capability to Caddo and St. Tammany Parishes, ICE is using this capability in seven Louisiana jurisdictions. Across the country, ICE is using this capability in 792 jurisdictions in 34 states. By 2013, ICE plans to be able to respond nationwide to all fingerprint matches generated through IDENT/IAFIS interoperability.

"The Caddo Sheriff's Office is honored to be the first law enforcement agency selected in our area to participate in this initiative and take advantage of the ICE database. This is another example of local and federal agencies working together successfully to keep our communities safe," said Caddo Sheriff Steve Prator.

Since ICE began using this enhanced information sharing capability in October 2008, immigration officers have removed from the United States more than 50,600 aliens convicted of a crime. ICE does not regard aliens charged with, but not yet convicted of crimes, as "criminal aliens." Instead, a "criminal alien" is an alien convicted of a crime. In accordance with the Immigration and Nationality Act, ICE continues to take action on aliens subject to removal as resources permit.

The IDENT system is maintained by DHS's US-VISIT program and IAFIS is maintained by the FBI's Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS).

"US VISIT is proud to support ICE, helping provide decision makers with comprehensive, reliable information when and where they need it," said US-VISIT Director Robert Mocny. "By enhancing the interoperability of DHS's and the FBI's biometric systems, we are able to give federal, state and local decision makers information that helps them better protect our communities and our nation."

"Under this plan, ICE will be utilizing FBI system enhancements that allow improved information sharing at the state and local law enforcement level based on positive identification of incarcerated criminal aliens," said Daniel D. Roberts, assistant director of the FBI's CJIS Division. "Additionally, ICE and the FBI are working together to take advantage of the strong relationships already forged between the FBI and state and local law enforcement necessary to assist ICE in achieving its goals."

For more information about how ICE is using biometrics to identify aliens convicted of a crime, visit www.ice.gov/secure_communities.

Firefighter Fatality

The United States Fire Administration (USFA) has received notice of the following firefighter fatality:

Name: Gary M. Valentino
Rank: Firefighter
Age: 41
Gender: Male
Status: Career
Years of Service: 13
Date of Incident: 11/26/2010
Time of Incident: 0021hrs
Date of Death: 11/26/2010

Fire Department: New York City Fire Department
Address: 9 Metro Tech Center, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Fire Department Chief: Fire Commissioner Salvatore J. Cassano
Fire Department Website: http://www.nyc.gov/html/fdny/html/home2.shtml

Incident Description: Firefighter Valentino was found unconscious in the firehouse bunkroom where, according to initial reports, he went to rest after stating that he was not feeling well.  The cause of Firefighter Valentino’s passing is still to be determined.

Incident Location:
3929 E Tremont Ave, Bronx, NY 10465

Funeral Arrangements: Pending
Memorial Fund Contact and Address: Pending
Tribute is being paid to Firefighter Gary M. Valentino at http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/fireservice/fatalities/

To date, 79 firefighter fatalities have been reported to USFA in 2010; 77 from incidents that occurred in 2010 and 2 from previous year incidents.  Year-to-date monthly and annual USFA firefighter fatality reports are posted online @ http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/fireservice/fatalities/statistics/ff_stats.shtm.

Chinle Man Indicted for Sexual Assault and Beating of a Pastor

2005 Cold Case Solved Through DNA Testing

PHOENIX—A federal grand jury in Phoenix has returned a four-count indictment against Eugene Clark, 25, of Chinle, Arizona for a violation of assault resulting in serious bodily injury, assault with a dangerous weapon, burglary in the first degree, and aggravated sexual abuse.

The indictment alleges that in January 2005, Clark broke into the home of a female victim, a lay pastor, in Chinle, Arizona. He repeatedly beat her in the head with a hammer while sexually assaulting her, and her injuries required hospitalization. A sexual assault exam revealed the presence of semen. The victim was able to describe her assailant, who was unknown to her. Despite an intense investigation and multiple interviews with possible suspects, a DNA comparison revealed none of those interviewed were the source of the semen.

In September 2010, the Northern Arizona Crime Laboratory, part of the Arizona Department of Public Safety, ran the DNA samples from the sexual assault through CODIS, a computer software program which operates local, state, and national databases of DNA profiles from convicted offenders, unsolved crime scene evidence, and missing persons. Every state in the nation has a statutory provision for the establishment of a DNA database that allows for the collection of DNA profiles from offenders convicted of particular crimes. CODIS software enables state, local, and national law enforcement crime laboratories to compare DNA profiles electronically, thereby linking serial crimes to each other and identifying suspects by matching DNA profiles from crime scenes with profiles from convicted offenders.

The DNA sample from the prior sexual assault examination matched Clark’s, who was serving time for being a felon in possession of a firearm. Clark was convicted in 2009 in the Arizona District Court and lived in Chinle, where the sexual assault took place. The Federal Bureau of Investigation then obtained confirming DNA samples from the defendant.

“This was a brutal assault and the defendant eluded prosecution for a period of time because the case remained unsolved,” said Dennis K. Burke United States Attorney. “I commend the work of the Northern Arizona Crime Laboratory whose technology was key in identifying the suspect so that he can no longer elude justice.”

A conviction for aggravated sexual abuse carries a maximum penalty of life, a $250,000 fine, or both. In determining an actual sentence, Judge Murguia, will consult the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide appropriate sentencing ranges. The judge, however, is not bound by those guidelines in determining a sentence.

An indictment is simply the method by which a person is charged with criminal activity and raises no inference of guilt. An individual is presumed innocent until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

The investigation preceding the indictment was conducted the Navajo Department of Law Enforcement and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Dyanne C. Greer, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona, Phoenix is handling the prosecution.

CASE NUMBER: CR-10-8215-PCT-MHM
RELEASE NUMBER: 2010-254(Clark)

Friday, November 26, 2010

DuPage Cold Case: 25 Year Old Du Page County Murder - UNSOLVED

DuPage Cold Case: 25 Year Old Du Page County Murder - UNSOLVED

South Dakota Inmate Sentenced for Mailing Threatening Letter to Judge

U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that a South Dakota State Penitentiary inmate charged with sending threatening letters was sentenced on November 23, 2010, by U.S. District Judge Lyle Strom. James Archambault, age 48, was sentenced to 77 months of incarceration to run concurrently with the time he is presently serving on a state sentence.

Archambault was indicted by a federal grand jury on July 7, 2009, for mailing threatening communications. In December of 2008, Archambault mailed a letter in an envelope addressed to a United States District Judge in Rapid City, South Dakota. Archambault was an inmate at the South Dakota State Penitentiary when he sent the letter to be delivered by the U.S. Postal Service. The handwritten letter was 15 pages and contained threats to injure and kill a United States District Judge. He pled guilty to the indictment on September 20, 2010.

This case was investigated by the FBI. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey C. Clapper prosecuted the case.

Two Tucson Men Sentenced for Possession of Child Pornography

One Defendant Had More Than 60,000 Still Images and Videos on His Computer

TUCSON, AZ—In two separate cases, a pair of Tucson men have been sentenced to prison for possession of child pornography following successful prosecutions by the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Adam Fell Berner, 47, of Tucson was sentenced to 84 months (seven years) in prison by U.S. District Court Judge David C. Bury. Berner was convicted following his plea of guilty on September 29, 2009.

An Immigration and Customs Enforcement investigation discovered that Berner had subscribed to several online services which sold child pornography images over the Internet. Financial records revealed Berner paid for these subscriptions on multiple occasions throughout 2006.

In April 2008, a search warrant was executed at Berner's residence and his computer was seized. A forensic examination of the computer revealed 59,108 still images and 7,780 videos of child pornography. Berner was arrested pursuant to a federal indictment. In addition to the first computer, Berner admitted that he possessed another computer which was found to contain over 1,000 images of child pornography.

In the second case, U.S. District Court Judge Raner C. Collins sentenced Mark Nicholas Rossi, 41, of Tucson, Ariz., to 120 months (10 years) in prison. The defendant pleaded guilty on July 12, 2010.

In November 2007, a Federal Bureau of Investigation agent in Chicago, investigating the online trade of child pornography, discovered Rossi was sharing images of child pornography via the Internet. In February 2008, a search warrant was executed at his home and his computer was seized.

A forensic examination of his computer revealed he possessed numerous video and still images of child pornography. It also showed he used the computer to download, share, and view child pornography.

"Both of these defendants contributed to the illicit child pornography industry. Crippling this illegal and aberrant industry is a top priority of my office." said Dennis K. Burke, United States Attorney. "These two cases should serve notice that we will go after anyone who engages in the possession or transfer of child pornography. I want to thank both the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Federal Bureau of Investigation for their work in these cases."

Angela Woolridge, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona Tucson handled the prosecution in both cases.

CASE NUMBER: CR-09-0982-TUC-DCB
RELEASE NUMBER: 2010-252(Berner_Rossi)

DEA Moves to Emergency Control Synthetic Marijuana

Agency Will Study Whether To Permanently Control Five Substances

NOV 24 -- WASHINGTON, D.C. – The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is using its emergency scheduling authority to temporarily control five chemicals (JWH-018, JWH-073, JWH-200, CP-47,497, and cannabicyclohexanol) used to make “fake pot” products.  Except as authorized by law, this action will make possessing and selling these chemicals or the products that contain them illegal in the U.S. for at least one year while the DEA and the United States Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) further study whether these chemicals and products should be permanently controlled. 

A Notice of Intent to Temporarily Control was published in the Federal Register today to alert the public to this action. After no fewer than 30 days, DEA will publish in the Federal Register a Final Rule to Temporarily Control these chemicals for at least 12 months with the possibility of a six-month extension. They will be designated as Schedule I substances, the most restrictive category, which is reserved for unsafe, highly abused substances with no medical usage.

Over the past year, smokable herbal blends marketed as being “legal” and providing a marijuana-like high, have become increasingly popular, particularly among teens and young adults.  These products consist of plant material that has been coated with research chemicals that mimic THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, and are sold at a variety of retail outlets, in head shops and over the Internet.  These chemicals, however, have not been approved by the FDA for human consumption and there is no oversight of the manufacturing process.  Brands such as “Spice,” “K2,” “Blaze,” and “Red X Dawn” are labeled as incense to mask their intended purpose. 

Since 2009, DEA has received an increasing number of reports from poison centers, hospitals and law enforcement regarding these products.  Fifteen states have already taken action to control one or more of these chemicals.  The Comprehensive Crime Control Act of 1984 amends the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) to allow the DEA Administrator to emergency schedule an abused, harmful, non-medical substance in order to avoid an imminent public health crisis while the formal rule-making procedures described in the CSA are being conducted. 

“The American public looks to the DEA to protect its children and communities from those who would exploit them for their own gain,” said DEA Acting Administrator Michele M. Leonhart.  “Makers of these harmful products mislead their customers into thinking that ‘fake pot’ is a harmless alternative to illegal drugs, but that is not the case.  Today’s action will call further attention to the risks of ingesting unknown compounds and will hopefully take away any incentive to try these products.”

Firefighter Fatality

The United States Fire Administration (USFA) has received notice of the following firefighter fatality:

Name: Fernando Sanchez
Rank: Inmate Firefighter
Age: 25
Gender: Male
Status: Wildland Part-Time
Years of Service: Pending
Date of Incident: 11/23/2010
Time of Incident: 1420hrs
Date of Death: 11/23/2010
Fire Department: California Department of Corrections
Address: 1515 S Street,
Suite 502
, South Sacramento, CA 95814
Fire Department Chief: Secretary Matthew Cate

Incident Description: Inmate Firefighter Sanchez was killed when the crew carrying vehicle (CCV) he was riding in was struck head-on by a car that, according to press reports, had crossed over the center of the roadway into oncoming traffic.

Sanchez, along with other inmate firefighters, was reported to have been ejected from the heavily damaged CCV as it rolled at least one time along the shoulder of the roadway coming to a final resting position on its right side.  Four of the other inmates were critically injured.  Eight additional people, including a Los Angeles County Fire Department firefighter who drove the CCV and served as the crew's leader, received minor-to-moderate injuries. The driver of the car that struck the CCV was also killed and pronounced dead at the scene of the accident.

Incident Location: Highway 138 near Interstate 5 south of Gorman.

Funeral Arrangements: Pending
Memorial Fund Contact and Address: Pending
Tribute is being paid to Inmate Firefighter Fernando Sanchez at http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/fireservice/fatalities/

To date, 78 firefighter fatalities have been reported to USFA in 2010; 76 from incidents that occurred in 2010 and 2 from previous year incidents.  Year-to-date monthly and annual USFA firefighter fatality reports are posted online @ http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/fireservice/fatalities/statistics/ff_stats.shtm.

Athens, Texas Man Sentenced for Child Pornography Violations

Repair Shop Found Child Pornography on Broken Laptop

TYLER, TX—A 43-year-old Athens, Texas man has been sentenced to federal prison for child pornography violations in the Eastern District of Texas announced U.S. Attorney John M. Bales today.

James Clifford Hendrix pleaded guilty on June 2, 2010, to possession of child pornography and was sentenced to 97 months in federal prison today by U.S. District Judge Michael H. Schneider.

According to information presented in court, on Aug. 15, 2008, Hendrix mailed his laptop computer to a computer repair business in Florida. During the repair, employees discovered images of child pornography and notified law enforcement authorities. A federal search warrant was obtained and executed at Hendrix's home, during which an additional computer was located which also contained child pornography images. An analysis of the computers revealed approximately 42 videos and 49 photographs of child pornography. Some of the material depicted children less than 12 years of age engaged in sadistic or masochistic conduct. Hendrix was indicted by a federal grand jury on Nov. 4, 2009.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

This case was investigated by the FBI and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher T. Tortorice.

Ponchatoula Woman Pleads Guilty to Defrauding American Red Cross

NEW ORLEANS, LA—WANDA C. BAHAM, age 33, a resident of Ponchatoula, Louisiana, pled guilty in federal court today before U.S. District Judge Jay C. Zainey to one count of wire fraud relating to fraudulent applications for financial assistance that she submitted to the American Red Cross between September 2005 and December 2005, announced U.S. Attorney Jim Letten.

According to court documents, BAHAM applied for and received disaster assistance funds from the American Red Cross on approximately 11 occasions. The Red Cross made disaster assistance money of up to $1,565 available to those affected by the hurricanes of 2005 on a one-time only basis. BAHAM  repeatedly applied for these funds throughout the early fall of 2005, indicating that she had not yet received any money at all from the Red Cross. In all, BAHAM was provided $12,220 from the American Red Cross, of which approximately $10,655 was fraudulently obtained.

Upon sentencing, scheduled for February 22, 2010, BAHAM faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years, a $250,000 fine, restitution to the American Red Cross, and three years of supervised release following imprisonment.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The prosecution is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Peter M. Thomson.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Bank Robber Sentenced to 20 Years

PHILADELPHIA—John Agot Canlas, 25, of Douglasville, Pennsylvania, was sentenced today to 240 months in prison for his participation in a string of 17 bank robberies between July 2008 and October 2008 in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, the Middle District of Pennsylvania, the District of New Jersey, and the District of Delaware. Canlas pleaded guilty October 19, 2009 to conspiracy to commit bank robbery, bank robbery, armed bank robbery, and carrying and using a firearm during and in relation of a violent crime. Canlas’ co-defendants, Rasheid Malic Robinson and Marquis Jamal Wicker, also pleaded guilty and were previously sentenced.

In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Court Judge Eduardo C. Robreno ordered Canlas to pay restitution in the amount of $67,983.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and various state and local law enforcement agencies throughout the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, the District of New Jersey, and the District of Delaware. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Salvatore L. Astolfi.

The FBI New York Division Reminds Shoppers to Remain Vigilant This Holiday Season

The holiday season is upon us and the FBI New York reminds New Yorkers to be aware of criminals looking to steal money and personal information through various types of cyber crimes and fraudulent activity. Scammers frequently employ a variety of techniques to fool potential victims, including conducting fraudulent auction sales, reshipping merchandise purchased with stolen credit cards, selling fraudulent or stolen gift cards through auction sites at discounted prices, and engaging in a number of phishing and smishing schemes.

Special Agent in Charge Mary Galligan said, "We must remain vigilant while working to protect our personal information from getting into the hands of criminals who wish to cause financial harm. This warning should serve as a reminder for everyone to practice due diligence this holiday season."

Scammers use many techniques to deceive potential victims for their own personal gain. Internet criminals are no exception. Many criminals post classified ads or auctions for products they do not have. Fraudsters receive an order from a victim, charge the victim's credit card for the amount of the order, then use a separate, stolen credit card for the actual purchase. They pocket the purchase price obtained from the victim's credit card and have the merchant ship the item directly to the victim. When an item is purchased from an online auction, but received directly from the merchant, this is a strong indication of fraud. Victims of such a scam not only lose the money paid to the fraudster, but may be liable for receiving stolen goods.

Shoppers may help avoid these scams by using caution and not providing financial information directly to the seller. Always use a legitimate payment service to ensure a safe purchase. Protect yourself by checking each seller's ratings and feedback, and be wary of anyone with 100 percent positive feedback if they have a low number of postings.

Gift card scams are also a concern. Exercise caution when purchasing gift cards through auction sites or classified ads, it is safest to purchase them directly from the merchant or an authorized retail store. This will give the merchant a chance to deactivate the gift card number if fraudulent and thereby protect your purchase.

Existing phishing and smishing schemes have also been developed for promoting fraudulent activity. In a phishing scheme, fraudsters will pose as a valid entity and use e-mails and scam websites to obtain victims' personal information, such as account numbers, user names, passwords, etc. Smishing is the act of sending fraudulent text messages to bait a victim into revealing personal information.

Exercise due diligence when receiving e-mails or text messages that indicate a problem or question regarding your financial accounts. In this scam, fraudsters direct victims to follow a link or call a number to update an account or correct a purported problem. The link directs the victim to a fraudulent website or message that appears legitimate. Instead, the site allows the fraudster to steal any personal information the victim provides.

Current smishing schemes involve fraudsters calling victims' cell phones offering to lower the interest rates for credit cards the victims do not even possess. If a victim asserts that they do not own the credit card, the caller hangs up. These fraudsters call from TRAC cell phones that do not have voicemail, or the phone provides a constant busy signal when called, rendering these calls virtually untraceable.

Another scam involves fraudsters directing victims, via e-mail, to a spoofed website. A spoofed website is a fake site that misleads the victim into providing personal information, which is routed to the scammer's computer.

Phishing schemes related to deliveries are also rampant this holiday season. Legitimate delivery service providers neither e-mail shippers regarding scheduled deliveries nor state when a package is intercepted or being temporarily held. Consequently, e-mails informing of such delivery issues are phishing scams that can lead to personal information breaches and financial losses.

Special Agent Richard Kolko said, "Many will be targeted this year by individuals looking to exploit personal and financial information for their own personal agenda. Be smart—protect yourself and your families from the crooks who look to manipulate this information and use it to their own advantage. If it doesn't seem right, it probably isn't."

To protect yourself from falling victim to fraudulent schemes this holiday season, the FBI also recommends the following tips:

• Do not respond to unsolicited (spam) e-mail.

• Do not click on links contained within an unsolicited e-mail.

• Be cautious of e-mail claiming to contain pictures in attached files, as the files may contain viruses. Only open attachments from known senders. Scan the attachments for viruses if possible.

• Avoid filling out forms contained in e-mail messages that ask for personal information.

• Always compare the link in the e-mail with the link to which you are directed and determine if they match and will lead you to a legitimate site.

• Log directly onto the official website for the business identified in the e-mail, instead of "linking" to it from an unsolicited e-mail. If the e-mail appears to be from your bank, credit card issuer, or other company you deal with frequently, your statements or official correspondence from the business will provide the proper contact information.

• Contact the actual business that supposedly sent the e-mail to verify if the e-mail is genuine.

• If you are asked to act quickly, or there is an emergency, it may be a scam. Fraudsters create a sense of urgency to get you to act quickly.

• Verify any requests for personal information from any business or financial institution by contacting them using the main contact information.

To receive the latest information about cyber scams, please go to the FBI website and sign up for e-mail alerts.

If you have received a scam e-mail, please notify the IC3 by filing a complaint at www.ic3.gov. For more information on e-scams, please visit the FBI's New E-Scams and Warnings webpage at http://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/e-scams.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Jamaican brothers extradited to US on narcotics trafficking charges

Drug couriers hid cocaine in retractable luggage handrails

NEWARK, N.J. - Roger and Romeo Folkes, 39 and 27, of Jamaica, West Indies, were extradited to the United States on charges of conspiracy to import and export cocaine into the United States following an international investigation by agents with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in Newark.

According to court documents filed in the extradition proceedings, the conspiracy involved drug couriers from the United States, including Tajara Barnes and Genard Howard who would travel to Jamaica and St. Lucia, where Roger and Romeo Folkes, and co-conspirator Mervin Francis would hide cocaine in the handrails of the couriers' luggage. The couriers would then return to the United States carrying the cocaine-filled luggage, where another co-conspirator, Cortnie Spencer would at times take possession of the luggage and deliver it to couriers who were scheduled to travel to Great Britain. Once in Great Britain, the couriers would deliver the cocaine to Nigel Roberts, Prine George Alfonso Jones, and others in exchange for payment.

Peter T. Edge, special agent in charge of ICE HSI in Newark started: "HSI and our law enforcement partners are determined to bring drug smugglers to justice, wherever they go. They can not hide from our global reach."

Agencies also participating in the investigations include the Drug Enforcement Administration, West Midlands Police Complex Casework Unit in Birmingham; the Department of Homeland Security, HSI Attaché, Kingston, Jamaica; and officers of the United Kingdom Border Agency and the Jamaican Fugitive Apprehension Team (JFAT), composed of officers of the Jamaican Police and the United States Marshals Service in Kingston Jamaica and the Department of Justice Criminal Division's Office of International Affairs and the United States Attorney, District of New Jersey.

The other individuals charged in the superseding indictment are:

Nigel Roberts, 33, of Birmingham, England, who pleaded guilty on October 21, 2009 to conspiracy to import and export five kilos or more of cocaine and was sentenced to 80 months in prison on November 15, 2010.

Cortnie Spencer, 34, of Queens, N.Y., who pleaded guilty to conspiracy to import and export five kilos or more of cocaine on April 19, 2010 and awaits sentencing.

Mervin Francis, 35, of Jamaica, was extradited from Great Britain and appeared in federal court in September 2009. On April 27, 2010, he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to import and export cocaine. He admitted that once the narcotics were received in Great Britain he received Western Union transfers on behalf of the conspirators that were sent as payment for the drugs. He was sentenced to 40 months in prison on August 9, 2010.

Tajara Barnes, 35, and Genard Howard, 35, both of Brooklyn, N.Y. were first arrested in London in May 2008. On April 27, 2010, Barnes and Howard both pleaded guilty to conspiracy to import and export cocaine. Barnes and Howard admitted to conspiring to travel from the U.S. to St. Lucia on April 24, 2008 for the purpose of bringing back narcotics on May 1, 2008. While in St. Lucia they received narcotics from individuals including Francis. They admitted to then traveling from New York to London on May 5, 2008 with narcotics hidden in their suitcases. Howard was sentenced to 60 months in prison on November 15, 2010. Barnes awaits sentencing.

Prine George Alfonso Jones, 44, of Birmingham, was arrested on February 3, 2009 in Great Britain for allegedly transporting narcotics directly from St. Lucia to Great Britain, where he is currently in custody.

Both Folkes brothers are charged with conspiracy to import and export five kilos or more of cocaine, which carries a maximum sentence of life in prison and fines up to $4 million.

Gulf Coast BEST members seize sailing vessel with 4,500 pounds of marijuana; arrest 3 suspects

GULFPORT, Miss. - On Sunday, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)-led Gulf Coast Border Enforcement Security Taskforce (BEST) reported the arrest of three individuals and the seizure of a sailing vessel and approximately 4,500 pounds of marijuana on the Mississippi Sound south of Bay St. Louis, Miss.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection's (CBP) Air and Marine assets located the sailing vessel, "Sarah Moira," an 80 foot steel hull sailboat sailing from the Caribbean into the Gulfport area. BEST assets maintained surveillance until it was boarded by BEST task force members. The task force members who participated in the operation included the ICE Office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); CBP’s Air & Marine Operations, Office of Border Patrol, and Office of Field Operation; the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG); and the Harrison County (Mississippi) Sherriff’s Office. The boarding revealed two large wooden containers in the forward hold of the vessel containing contraband, weighing approximately 4,500 pounds. The three individuals aboard the vessel were taken into custody and the vessel was brought to the USCG Station in Gulfport, Miss., where the task force worked in a combined effort to offload the seized contraband.

"Sunday's arrests clearly show how the extensive cooperation of all members of the Gulf Coast BEST can bring to justice a criminal organization that was transporting illegal drugs into the United States," said Raymond R. Parmer, Jr., special agent in charge of ICE HSI in New Orleans. "This organization was reaping profits by bringing these drugs into the country and distributing them to our communities. ICE and our BEST partners are dedicated to targeting and dismantling criminal organizations that endanger public safety."

The Gulf Coast BEST is a DHS initiative established in New Orleans, Gulfport and Mobile, Ala., that is designed as a multi-agency response to address national security and other law enforcement concerns affecting the Gulf Coast. It is comprised of ICE HSI, CBP, Transportation Security Administration (TSA), U.S. Coast Guard, Internal Revenue Service, and several state and local law enforcement agencies from Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. BEST members are co-located so that they can effectively share information. Close coordination among federal, state and local law enforcement agencies helps to identify and eliminate cross-border criminal organizations such as alien and drug smuggling networks and the infrastructures that sustain them.

This seizure highlights the success of the Gulf Coast BEST and its commitment to identify, disrupt and dismantle dangerous transnational crime which threatens the United States.

Firefighter Fatality

The United States Fire Administration (USFA) has received notice of the following firefighter fatality:

Name: Worne T. Hall
Rank: Fire Police Captain
Age: 86
Gender: Male
Status: Volunteer
Years of Service: 33
Date of Incident: 11/19/2010
Time of Incident: 1421hrs
Date of Death: 11/19/2010
Fire Department: Hitchins Volunteer Fire Department
Address:
PO Box 17, Hitchins, KY 41146
Fire Department Chief: Greg Shaffer

Incident Description: Captain Hall responded to a reported ATV rollover and was coordinating the landing zone for a medical helicopter when he began experiencing chest pain. Treatment was initiated on-scene and he was transported to King's Daughters' Medical Center in Ashland where he passed away of an apparent heart attack.

Incident Location: Near the Old Willard School, State Rd 1496/State Hwy 1.

Funeral Arrangements: Visitation 11/22/2010 from 1800-2100hrs at the Malone Funeral Home,
325 Malone Lane, Grayson, KY.
Funeral services will be held at the Malone Funeral Home, 11/23/2010, at 1130hrs.
Memorial Fund Contact and Address: In honor of Fire Police Captain Worne T. Hall, c/o Hitchins Volunteer Fire Department,
PO Box 17, Hitchins, KY 41146
.
Tribute is being paid to Fire Police Captain Worne T. Hall at http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/fireservice/fatalities/

To date, 77 firefighter fatalities have been reported to USFA in 2010; 75 from incidents that occurred in 2010 and 2 from previous year incidents.  Year-to-date monthly and annual USFA firefighter fatality reports are posted online @ http://www.usfa.dhs.gov/fireservice/fatalities/statistics/ff_stats.shtm.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

147 NYPD Officers Listed

With the addition of Sergeant Joseph L. Giacalone, there are now 147 NYPD law enforcement officials are listed among the 1105 state and local police officers on Police-Writers.com. The 1105 police officials come from 471 departments and have authored over 2400 books. The website maintains additional listings of federal law enforcement officials, corrections officers, civilian police employees and police officers from foreign countries.

Sergeant Joseph L. Giacalone, New York City Police Department, “is a 19 year law enforcement supervisor with an extensive background in criminal investigations. He has held many prestigious positions, but his favorite was the Commanding Officer of the Cold Case Homicide Squad. Joe has personally worked on hundreds of murders, suicides and missing person cases throughout his career and is always willing to share his knowledge and experiences with others. He is a highly decorated member of the force, including the recipient of the Medal of Valor. Joseph L. Giacalone obtained a Master of Arts Degree in Criminal Justice with a Specialty in Crime and Deviance from John Jay College of Criminal Justice in 2005. He has been an Adjunct Professor at John Jay since January of 2006. Sergeant Joseph L. Giacalone is the author of Writing Crime New York Style and The Criminal Investigative Function: A Guide for New Investigators (Due out January 2011).

More Information
http://www.police-writers.com/

Monday, November 22, 2010

Video: Officer Involved Shooting



This shooting occurred in January 2010, Ravalli County Montana. The officer was subsequently cleared by a jury and the shooting ruled justified in April 2010. Watch carefully as the suspect points the handgun at the officer's face, you can hear the hammer fall on either a misfire or a round wasn't chambered.

1104 Police Officers

With the addition of Captain Neil Low, Seattle Police Department, Police-Writers.com now lists 1104 state or local police officers who have written books. The officers come from 471 departments and have written 2417 books on subjects ranging from police procedurals and true crime novels to books on law enforcement tactics.

Captain Neil Low, Seattle Police Department, “is currently the Commander of Advanced Training. Other areas he has commanded include: Homicide and Violent Crimes, Internal Affairs, Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and the agency’s first commander of its Ethics and Professional Responsibility Section. He is a Vietnam veteran and a cum laude graduate of the University of Washington’s Bothell campus, where he also wrote for the school’s weekly newspaper, The UW Bothell Commons. A Seattle native, he now lives in Everett with his wife and three daughters. Captain Neil Low is the author of Thick as Thieves, Sign of the Dragon and Unreasonable Persuasion.

According to the book description of Thick as Thieves, “Seattle in the 1940s: from its sprawling ports to its exotic bordellos in Chinatown, it is a rain-drenched harbor of greed, sex, and corruption-and now a mysterious murder. Alan Stewart loses his private investigator father at the hands of corrupt police officials. As he sets out to seek answers and to avenge his father's death, Alan uncovers clues that lead all the way to the "Crime of the Century"-The Lindbergh Kidnapping!”

More Information
http://www.police-writers.com/

Sunday, November 21, 2010

DEA Operations Dismantle Two Major Heroin Trafficking Organizations

NOV 19 -- On November 17, 2010, federal, state and local law enforcement officers arrested ten Mexican nationals and executed a series of search warrants in the Albuquerque metropolitan area in connection with two Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) investigations targeting two major heroin trafficking organizations. More than twenty pounds of heroin were seized during yesterday’s enforcement action, one of the largest heroin seizures in New Mexico.

The DEA investigations, code-named “Operation Brown Stone” and “Operation Sole Runner,” leading to yesterday’s arrests and seizures were designated as Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) operations. OCDETF is a nationwide program that combines the resources and unique expertise of federal agencies, along with their local counterparts, in a coordinated attack against major drug trafficking and money laundering organizations. Operation Brown Stone targeted an organization that allegedly distributed several kilograms of heroin in the Albuquerque area on a monthly basis in addition to distributing other narcotics including methamphetamine and marijuana.

Operation Sole Runner was aimed at dismantling an organization that allegedly smuggled heroin from Mexico into New Mexico and then distributed the heroin throughout the country. The ten defendants, who generally are charged with unlawfully trafficking in heroin and methamphetamine in a series of criminal complaints, were presented before United States Magistrate Judge Robert Hayes Scott today. The defendants are detained pending preliminary hearings and detention hearings scheduled for November 19, 2010.

Special Agent Bomb Technicians

Another installment in our continuing series about the men and women of the FBI and the equipment they use to get the job done.

They put their lives on the line to deal with suspicious packages and vehicles that might contain bombs or weapons of mass destruction. They are special agent bomb technicians—“bomb techs”—and their prime directive is simple: the preservation of life.

To achieve their mission, bomb techs use a variety of tools—from robots to X-ray machines—to identify, diagnose, and disrupt suspected or real explosive devices. Because a few seconds could mean the difference between success and disaster, every piece of equipment must be in perfect working order and ready to deploy at a moment’s notice.

Facts
The special agent bomb technician (SABT) program is part of the FBI’s Hazardous Devices Operations Center in our Critical Incident Response Group.
Every field office has at least one SABT. All bomb techs are certified through a rigorous six-week program and recertified every three years.
In the field, bomb techs regularly work with the evidence response units and HAZMAT and SWAT teams of our local, state, and federal law enforcement partners.
Suspicious packages and suspicious vehicles represent about 90 percent of the calls bomb techs respond to, which could include weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) and improvised explosives devices (IEDs).

Truck
This specially made bomb tech vehicle went into service in 2008.

Stats:
Weight: 32,000 pounds.
Load capacity: 3,000 pounds.
Length: 32 feet, 10.5 inches.
Height: 11 feet, 5.75 inches.
Features
Computer network allows real-time transfer of vital information to FBI Headquarters or other command posts.
Bomb techs can remotely operate robots from two sets of quad monitors inside the truck. Camera tower on roof extends to 25 feet, allowing extended field of view.
Self-contained for emergency response, with ample storage inside and out for a variety of equipment.
Cell phone and land-line capabilities for communications in all situations.
On-board generator allows battery-operated equipment such as the robot to be charged even when the truck’s power is off.

Suit
A bomb tech’s suit weights about 90 pounds and is equipped with a variety of safety and other devices.

Pants are constructed of fire-resistant Nomex and Kevlar to provide leg protection.
A ceramic “trauma plate” in front provides groin protection.
A honeycomb plastic support covers the back and offers maximum absorption to prevent spinal cord injury in the event a blast propels a bomb tech backward.
Kevlar jacket includes ceramic trauma plate around chest; also contains quick release toggles so SABTs can spin out of their suits very quickly if necessary.
Bomb techs rarely wear gloves, because hand agility and dexterity is critical.
Helmet weighs about 15 pounds and is equipped with amplifiers to increase ambient sounds. Also has defogger, lights, and ventilation fan controlled by buttons on sleeve.
Power pack on hip powers fan, lights, and defogger.
Suit typically contains no communication equipment because such devices are controlled by radio frequency and could trigger an explosive device. But special radios can be mounted on suit if necessary.

Toolkit
Because bombs are often contained within other devices, bomb techs carry a toolkit that includes standard items like screw drivers, drill bits, and flashlights.

Robot
Weighs 800 pounds.
Runs on two marine batteries, but can be hardwired for continuous power.
Can gain access to almost any location on land.
Always the first response option, to keep humans from danger.
Can be operated remotely or by bomb tech with on-board hand controls.
Equipped with three cameras and two-way microphone (used for speaking to people in hostage situations).
Custom attachment allows render-safe devices to be deployed directly from the robot.
Front “claw” does everything a hand does. Has attachments sensitive enough to open a car door or carry a saw for cutting.

X-Ray
Primary diagnostic tool for suspicious packages and devices.
Portable device takes standard X-ray images, which are displayed on a laptop computer.
Results are enlarged and digitally manipulated for further analysis, then transmitted wirelessly to command posts or other bomb experts.

Pan Disrupter
Primary deployment tool for disrupting suspicious packages or real or potential improvised explosive devices.
Horizontally angled weapons grade high strength stainless steel canon can fire water or specialized ammunition to disrupt or dismantle an explosive device.

Total Containment Vessel
Used to safely transport an explosive device to a remote location for investigation or detonation.
Round steel ball is up to 12 inches thick and can hold 10 pounds of explosives. Other models vary in capacity.
Newest models are automated, allowing robots to place explosives safely inside the vessel.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

California UBS Client Charged with Hiding Assets in Secret Swiss Bank Account

WASHINGTON – Jeffrey Chatfield of San Diego pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge Nita Stormes to a criminal information charging him with filing a false tax return related to a Swiss bank account that he maintained at UBS, the Justice Department and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced today.

The guilty plea is subject to final acceptance by U.S. District Judge Michael M. Anello. Sentencing has been set for Feb. 7, 2011. Chatfield remains free on bail pending sentencing, where he faces a maximum sentence of three years in prison.

According to court documents and statements made in court, Chatfield pleaded guilty to filing a false tax return for 2003 in which he failed to report that he had an interest in or a signature authority over a Swiss financial account at UBS. He also failed to report income earned on this UBS Swiss bank account. In or about 2000, with the assistance of a UBS banker, Chatfield opened a bank account at UBS Bahamas Ltd., in the name of nominee entity Alder West. Chatfield deposited into the account approximately $900,000 in untaxed securities and cash that he received in 2000 from his consulting work, which included advising private companies seeking to go public.

In August 2002, Chatfield closed the Alder West account and with the assistance of his UBS banker and others, formed Iberia West Ltd., a Bahamian nominee entity. Chatfield then opened a new Swiss account at UBS in the name of Iberia West and transferred into that account securities and cash previously held at UBS Bahamas Ltd. In August 2004, Chatfield closed his Iberia West account and transferred all remaining assets to an account at another large global Swiss bank headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, also held in the name of the nominee entity Iberia West. In 2008, this other Swiss bank told Chatfield that it was closing all accounts held by U.S. taxpayers. Chatfield closed this account in 2008.

Chatfield admitted to filing false tax returns from 2000 to 2008 that concealed his interest in these various offshore accounts and failing to report any income earned from these accounts. Chatfield also admitted that he never filed any reports of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts

(FBARs) disclosing his interest in any offshore financial accounts. As part of his plea agreement, Chatfield agreed to pay a 50 percent penalty for the one year with the highest balance in his Swiss UBS account in order to resolve his civil liability for failing to file FBARs, Forms TD F 90-22.1.

"This is part of a continuing effort by the IRS and Justice Department to combat international tax evasion," said IRS Deputy Commissioner Steven T. Miller. "These actions send a clear, unmistakable message to anyone who tries to use international borders to evade federal taxes."

In February 2009, UBS entered into a deferred prosecution agreement under which the bank admitted to helping U.S. taxpayers hide accounts from the IRS. As part of their agreement, UBS provided the United States government with the identities of, and account information for, certain U.S. customers of UBS’s cross-border business, including Chatfield.

Acting Assistant Attorney General John A. DiCicco and U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of California Laura E. Duffy commended the investigative efforts of the IRS Criminal Investigation agents who investigated the case and Tax Division trial attorney Timothy J. Stockwell and Assistant U.S. Attorney Yesmin Saide, who are prosecuting the case.

Additional information about the Justice Department’s Tax Division and its enforcement efforts is available at www.usdoj.gov/tax.