Federal Indictment Alleges That Peregrine CEO, Russell Wasendorf Sr., Lied To Regulators Every Month Since Jan 2010

August 14, 2012
Russell Wasendorf Sr.
“Prosecutors say Wasendorf lied to regulators about the value of customer funds on a monthly basis in reports from January 2010 through May 2012.”

Forbes on August 14, 2012 released the following:

By: Halah Touryalai, Forbes Staff

“Russell Wasendorf Sr., the CEO of the now bankrupt Peregrine Financial Group, has been formally charged by a federal grand jury on 31 counts of misleading regulators.

Wasendorf lied to the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission 31 times about the value of customer funds the firm held. Wasendorf, who’s been held in custody since being arrested in July, faces 155 years in prison and a fine of $7.75 million if convicted on all counts.

According to the indictment Wasendorf submitted false information for his U.S. futures and currency brokerage firm in its 2010 and 2011 financial statements.

Wasendorf “overstated the value of PFG’s customer segregated funds by at least tens of millions of dollars, well knowing and believing the actual value of PFG’s customer segregate funds was at least tens of millions of dollars less than stated in the financial documents,” the indictment says. []

The CEO’s false statements didn’t stop there, according to prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Iowa. Wasendorf lied to regulators about the value of customer funds on a monthly basis in reports from January 2010 through May 2012, prosecutors says.

Last month Wasendorf was arrested after regulators accused PFG of fraud, misusing of client money, violating customer fund segregation laws and making false statements about its finances. Peregrine file for bankruptcy and roughly $215 million in client assets are missing amid the mess.

Wasendorf’s arrest came just days after he attempted to take his own life outside his Iowa-based office building. According to police reports, the CEO attempted suicide and left a note stating that he had been stealing from the firm.

According to reports, the CEO attempted the suicide after a regulator pushed him to allow its auditors to electronically verify customer balances actually exist at its custodian bank–in this case, U.S. Bank.”

————————————————————–

Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys Videos:

Federal Crimes – Be Careful

Federal Crimes – Be Proactive

Federal Crimes – Federal Indictment

Federal Crimes – Detention Hearing

————————————————————–

To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


John F. Williams, an Elected Member of Warner Robins City Council, Indicted by a Federal Grand Jury

October 19, 2011

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on October 18, 2011 released the following:

“Michael J. Moore, United States Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia, announced that John F. Williams, an elected member of Warner Robins City Council, has been indicted by a federal grand jury and was today arrested for extortion under color of official right, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1951(a); false statements to a federal agency, in violation of Title 18 United States Code, Section 1001; and tampering with a witness, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1512(b)(3).

Count one of the indictment alleges that John F. Williams did knowingly and intentionally attempt to obstruct and affect, in any way and degree, commerce and the movement of articles and commodities in commerce by extortion; that is Williams unlawfully obtained property from another person in the form of $1,720.00 not otherwise due him and as a commission in relation to the sale of a vehicle to the Warner Robins Police Department. The maximum penalty for count one is 20 years’ imprisonment; a $250,000.00 fine; three years’ supervised release; and a $100 mandatory assessment fee.

Count two of the indictment alleges that John F. Williams did knowingly and willfully make a materially false statement to the Federal Bureau of Investigation concerning the sale of the vehicle to the Warner Robins Police Department, stating that he received no payment of money in relation to the sale of the vehicle, when in truth and fact Williams received a payment of $1,720.00 in relation to the sale. The maximum penalty for count two is five years’ imprisonment; a $250,000.00 fine; three years’ supervised release; and a $100 mandatory assessment fee.

Count three of the indictment alleges that John F. Williams attempted to corruptly persuade another person with intent to hinder, delay, and prevent the communication to a law enforcement officer regarding the sale of the vehicle. The maximum penalty for count three is 20 years’ imprisonment; a $250,000.00 fine; three years’ supervised release; and a $100 mandatory assessment fee.

“My office is committed to fighting criminal activity wherever it is found, whether that be on the city streets or in the city hall,” said U.S. Attorney Michael Moore.

Criminal indictments are only charges and not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty.”

————————————————————–

Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys Videos:

Federal Crimes – Federal Indictment

Federal Crimes – Detention Hearing

————————————————————–

To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Crimes Watch Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Mount Pleasant Man Charged with Allegedly Committing Federal Grant Fraud; Charged with His Wife in an Alleged Campaign Finance Fraud

September 20, 2011

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on September 19, 2011 released the following:

“United States Attorney Bill Nettles stated today that two indictments previously returned by a federal grand jury were unsealed today. A 36-count indictment charges that Mount Pleasant native Jian-Yun Dong and one of his companies, Vaxima, Inc., committed a number of offenses relating to the fraudulent use and conversion of funds received as federal grants. The indictment charges that the defendants submitted false claims for payment of federal grant monies and that they used grant funds received for scientific research for prohibited purposes. Specifically, this indictment charges that Dong, as the president and chief executive officer of GenPhar, Inc, (1) submitted false claims to federal agencies in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 287; (2) converted grant funds to his own use in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 641 and 666; and (3) committed wire fraud, in that he used interstate communications to execute a scheme to defraud the United States, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1343. The indictment also charges that Defendant Vaxima, Inc, a corporation owned solely by Dong, assisted in the execution of the scheme.

The second indictment charges Dong (54) and his estranged wife, Danher Wang (52) with violations of federal campaign laws. The seven-count indictment charges that Dong and Wang conspired to make illegal campaign contributions in the names of other persons using money from a foreign national, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371. The indictment further alleges in other counts that Dong and Wang made or caused others to make illegal contributions after they (Dong and Wang) exceeded their maximum contribution allowance, in violation of Title 2, United States Code, Sections 437(g)(1)(D)(I) and 441f. According to the indictment, contributions were made in a way to conceal their true origin from the FEC, campaigns and the public. Finally, the indictment alleges that Dong made false statements to law enforcement agents (in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1001) and that Dong attempted to illegally influence the testimony of a witness in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1512.

As to the grant fraud indictment, the maximum sentences Dong faces for wire fraud regarding the misuse of federal grant funds is 30 years’ imprisonment as to each count, with a maximum fine of $250,000 per count. Dong faces sentences of up to 10 years for the other charges contained in this indictment. Both Dong and Wang face maximum sentences of five years’ imprisonment and a $250,000 fine for each count of campaign finance fraud, and Dong faces an additional maximum sentence of 20 years as to the witness tampering charges in the first indictment.

These companion cases were investigated by agents of the Department of Defense Criminal Investigative Service, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, United States Army Criminal Investigation Command, and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. The cases will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Mark C. Moore and Debbie Barbier of the Columbia office.

The United States Attorney stated that all charges in these Indictments are merely accusations and that all defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.”

To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Crimes Watch Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

Bookmark and Share


Melissa L. Sims, Former FBI Technican, Sentenced in Hammond Federal Court

August 29, 2011

Main Justice on August 29, 2011 released the following:

“Former FBI Technican Sentenced; She Stole Almost $80,000

A former employee at an Indiana FBI office will spend 15 months in prison after pleading guilty for lying about stealing nearly $80,000.

Melissa L. Sims worked as an evidence control technician in the Merrillvile office from 1996 through September 2008. According to her plea agreement, Sims admitted to stealing or embezzling evidence she was supposed to have disposed of properly. She admitted that at least 10 times she signed documents saying that cash ranging from $2 to $2,790 had been returned, when she actually had kept it.

She also admitted that she had tampered with a witness in the case.

As part of the plea, she was ordered to repay $77,882 in restitution.”

To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Crimes Watch Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

Bookmark and Share


Members of International Procurement Network Federally Indicted for Allegedly Supplying Iran with U.S. Military Aircraft Components

June 23, 2011

The Department of Justice on June 23, 2011 released the following press release:

Total of 12 Defendants in U.S., France, U.A.E. and Iran Charged

MACON, Ga. – Seven individuals and five corporate entities based in the United States, France, the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) and Iran have been indicted in the Middle District of Georgia for their alleged roles in a conspiracy to illegally export military components for fighter jets and attack helicopters from the United States to Iran. One of the defendants and his company were sentenced yesterday, with the individual receiving nearly five years in prison. Another defendant and his company have admitted their illegal conduct and also pleaded guilty in the investigation.

Federal prosecutors today unsealed a superseding indictment in Macon, Ga., charging eight of the defendants with conspiring to violate and violating the Arms Export Control Act (AECA), the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) and the Iranian Transactions Regulations, as well as conspiracy to defraud the United States, money laundering and false statement violations. Charges against the four other defendants, who have pleaded guilty in the case, are contained in the original indictment in the investigation that was filed previously.

The indictment and other enforcement actions were announced by Todd Hinnen, Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security; Michael J. Moore, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia; Brock Nicholson, Special Agent-in-Charge of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI) office in Atlanta; Brian D. Lamkin, Special Agent-in-Charge of the FBI’s Atlanta Field Division; and Robert Luzzi, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Commerce Department, Office of Export Enforcement (OEE) Miami Field Office.

The Defendants

Thus far, four defendants based in the United States have been charged as part of the investigation. They are The Parts Guys LLC, a company in Port Orange, Fla., that maintains a warehouse at the Middle Georgia Municipal Airport in Macon, as well as the president of The Parts Guys, Michael Edward Todd, who is a U.S. national. In addition, Galaxy Aviation Services, a company in St. Charles, Ill., and its president, Hamid Seifi, also known as Hank Seifi, an Iranian-born U.S. national, have been charged.

Todd was arrested last year in Atlanta based on the original indictment in the case. Todd and his company, The Parts Guys, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to violate the AECA on May 9, 2011, and have yet to be sentenced. Federal agents arrested Seifi in Atlanta earlier this year, also based on the original indictment. Seifi and his company, Galaxy Aviation, pleaded guilty on Feb. 24, 2011, to conspiracy to violate the AECA and violating the IEEPA. Yesterday, Seifi was sentenced to 56 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release, a fine of $12,500 and forfeiture of $153,950, while Galaxy Aviation, which is now defunct, received a $400 special assessment.

Three defendants based in France have also been indicted as part of the investigation. They are Aerotechnic, a company in Pinsaguel, France, and its president, Philippe Sanchez, a French national, as well as Luc Teuly, a French national and the sales manager of Aerotechnic. Each of these defendants remains a fugitive.

Two defendants based in the U.A.E. have also been indicted in the case. They are Aletra General Trading, a company in Dubai doing business as “Erman & Sultan Trading Co,” and Syed Amir Ahmed Najfi, an Iranian national and purchaser for Aletra. Najfi remains a fugitive.

Three defendants based in Iran have also been charged in the case. They are Sabanican Company, a company in Tehran, and its president, Hassan Seifi, an Iranian national, as well as Reza Seifi, an Iranian national and the managing director of Sabanican Company. Each of these defendants remains at large.

As part of the U.S. government’s coordinated action against this procurement network, the Commerce Department announced today that it will add the eight defendants in France, Iran and the U.A.E. to its “Entity List.” The Entity List provides notice to the public that certain exports, re-exports and transfers (in-country) to parties identified on the Entity List require a license from the Commerce Department, and that availability of license exceptions in such transactions is limited. All eight parties will be added to the Entity List with a licensing requirement for all items subject to the Commerce Department export regulations and with a presumption of denial.

The Charges

According to the charges, the defendants conspired to export components for attack helicopters and fighter jets to Iran without obtaining the required U.S. export licenses. These components included military parts for the Bell AH-1 attack helicopter, the UH-1 Huey attack helicopter, as well as the F-5 and F-4 fighter jets.

Defendant Najfi and his firm in the U.A.E. are alleged to have placed orders and purchased military aircraft parts, including those for the Bell AH-1 attack helicopter, from Todd and his company, The Parts Guys, in the United States. Todd and other conspirators then attempted to and did cause the export of the aircraft parts to the U.A.E.

Defendant Hank Seifi and his firm in Illinois also allegedly placed orders and purchased U.S. aircraft parts from Todd and his company in Georgia — on behalf of Hassan Seifi, Reza Seifi and their company in Iran. According to the charges, Todd and other conspirators then caused these aircraft parts to be exported to Iran via the defendants in France: Sanchez, Teuly and their company, Aerotechnic.

The charge of conspiracy carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison, while violating the AECA carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, and violating IEEPA carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. Money laundering carries a maximum 20 years in prison, while making false statements carries a maximum of five years in prison.

“The defendants in this case are alleged to have conspired to defraud the United States by illegally acquiring and exporting fighter jet and attack helicopter components. Keeping such advanced weaponry, which is designed to protect the men and women of our Armed Forces and to defend our national interests, from falling into the hands of state sponsors of terror has never been more important,” said Todd Hinnen, Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security.

“Through coordinated law enforcement efforts, we have cut off more than a branch of this illegal supply tree; we have cut off the tree at its trunk. These parts have a military purpose, and I am determined to see that they are not used to harm the United States, its soldiers, citizens or friends. This type of criminal activity should remind each of us that we must be ever vigilant in our efforts to protect our national security. The threat is very real, and comes from even the least suspected places, including middle Georgia,” said U.S. Attorney Michael Moore.

“The illegal export of U.S. weapons and military technology presents a direct threat to our national security,” said Brock Nicholson, Special Agent-in-Charge of ICE-HSI in Atlanta. “This investigation demonstrates the importance of preventing our military equipment from falling into the wrong hands, where it could potentially be used against our military members, our homeland and our allies. Enforcing U.S. export laws is one of our top priorities, and we will continue working with our law enforcement partners to ensure that those who put our country at risk are discovered and brought forward for prosecution.”

Brian D. Lamkin, Special Agent-in-Charge, FBI Atlanta, stated: “The cooperative efforts among the FBI, ICE and U.S. Commerce was critical in bringing this case forward for prosecution by the U.S. Department of Justice. The enforcement of U.S. laws that prohibit the acquisition of specified defense related items is paramount to national security and is a daunting task when back dropped against the vast movement of legitimate international trade that occurs every day in the U.S. The FBI is pleased with the role that it has played in this multi-agency enforcement effort.”

“The Commerce Department’s Office of Export Enforcement (OEE) dedicates one hundred percent of its resources to enforcing export laws, and today’s case is the result of ongoing cooperation with Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the FBI to protect our national security,” said Robert Luzzi, Special Agent-in-Charge of OEE’s Miami Field Office. “Parties who export to embargoed destinations such as Iran will be pursued and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

This case was investigated by ICE Homeland Security Investigations in Atlanta, FBI Atlanta Field Division and the Department of Commerce’s OEE.

The prosecution is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jennifer Kolman and Danial E. Bennett from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Georgia and Trial Attorneys Ryan P. Fayhee and Brandon L. Van Grack from the Counterespionage Section of the Justice Department’s National Security Division.

The public is reminded that an indictment contains mere allegations and that defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.”

Attached is the Superseding Indictment – Case No. 5:10-CR-58-MTT.

To find additional federal criminal news, please read The Federal Crimes Watch Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN List Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

Bookmark and Share


Kerby Aurelhomme Indicted by a Federal Grand Jury in Miami for a Hobbs Act Robbery (18 USC 1951(a)), Possessing a Firearm During the Commission of a Federal Crime of Violence (18 USC 924(c)), and False Statements (18 USC 1001)

June 18, 2011

U.S. Attorney’s Office Southern District of Florida on June 17, 2011 released the following press release:

“Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and John V. Gillies, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office, announced that Kerby Aurelhomme, 26, of North Miami Beach, was indicted in connection with an armored car robbery and shooting of Gustavo Sorzano, which occurred on July 12, 2006, in Boca Raton, Florida.

Aurelhome made his initial appearance in court on June 15, 2011 before Chief U.S. Magistrate Judge Ann E. Vitunac. A pre-trial detention hearing is scheduled for June 24, 2011 at 10 A.M.

On May 31, 2011, Aurelhomme was charged in an indictment for a Hobbs Act robbery, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 1951(a); conspiracy to commit Hobbs Act robbery, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1951(a); possessing a firearm during the commission of a federal crime of violence, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, 924(c); and making a false statement to the government, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, 1001.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the FBI for their work on this case. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Brandy Galler.

An indictment is only a charging document, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.”

To find additional federal criminal news, please read The Federal Crimes Watch Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN List Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

Bookmark and Share