US authorities have sentenced a woman and a man for conspiracy to commit bank fraud in connection with a scheme to launder over $5.3 million in illicit proceeds of an online vehicle sale scam. The woman, who was the manager of the Brooklyn-based money laundering operation, has received a 4-year jail sentence, while the man – a co-conspirator – has received 1.5 years in jail.
During 2019-21, the convicts and other co-conspirators opened several bank accounts for shell companies to launder money stolen from people trying to buy vehicles online. The convicts received a percentage of the victims’ money for their service. Their co-conspirators ran fake websites or marketplace accounts purporting to sell cars over which they had no authority. The co-conspirators asked the victims of this scheme to transfer payment to accounts that the male convict and others had opened. Before the victims could realize that they had lost their money, the convicts would withdraw the deposits. Dozens of individuals were victimized by this scheme, losing over $5.3 million in total.
The female convict will also have to undergo three years of supervised release, forfeit $5,386,538, and pay restitution of $5,370,180. Meanwhile, the male convict will have to undergo three years of supervised release, forfeit $458,300, and pay restitution of $458,300.
Source: US Department of Justice