Insurance Agents and Attorneys Charged in an alleged $50 Million Insurance Fraud Scheme

August 2, 2013

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on August 1, 2013 released the following:

“SAN DIEGO, CA—United States Attorney Laura E. Duffy announced today that insurance brokers Byron Frisch and Kristian Giordano and attorneys Kasra Sadr and Brenda Barrera Merriles were arraigned today on a variety of charges related to their fraudulently causing life insurance companies to issue more than $50 million worth of policies to unqualified applicants who had no intention of paying the policy premiums. In return, the defendants obtained more than $1.6 million and the ability to sell the fraudulently obtained life insurance policies to investors.

According to the indictment, the defendants employed multiple means to deceive the insurance companies. Initially, the defendants recruited elderly individuals to apply for “free” life insurance policies with million-dollar death benefits. They then submitted fraudulent applications to the life insurance companies by intentionally omitting or falsifying the applicant’s net worth, income, or source of premium payments. In addition, the conspirators concealed that they were paying all or part of the policy premiums and intended to sell the policies on the secondary market for large profits.

Frisch and Giordano were licensed insurance agents who conducted business from their La Jolla, California offices. Sadr and Brenda were San Diego attorneys who secretly funded the policy premiums, acted as trustees for policy applicants, and controlled sales of the policies on the secondary market.

The defendants will next appear before United States District Judge Janis L. Sammartino for a motion hearing on September 6, 2013, at 1:30 p.m.

Defendants

Byron Arthur Frisch, 36, Carlsbad, California
Kristian Marcus Giordano, 36, Temecula, California
Kasra Sadr, 43, San Diego, California
Brenda N. Barrera Merriles, 43, San Diego, California

Summary of Charges in Criminal Case No. 13cr2774-JLS

Count one: Title 18, United States Code, Section 371—conspiracy to commit mail fraud, wire fraud—all defendants
Maximum penalties: five years of imprisonment; $250,000 fine; $100 special assessment; three years of supervised release

Counts two to nine: Title 18, United States Code, Section 1341—mail fraud—all defendants
Maximum penalties per count: 20 years of imprisonment; $250,000 fine or twice the gross pecuniary gain or twice the pecuniary loss (whichever is greatest), $100 special assessment; three years of supervised release

Counts 10-23: Title 18 United States Code, Section 1343—wire fraud—all defendants
Maximum penalties per count: 20 years of imprisonment; $250,000 fine or twice the gross pecuniary gain or twice the pecuniary loss (whichever is greatest), $100 special assessment; three years of supervised release

Investigating Agencies

Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation
Federal Bureau of Investigation

An indictment itself is not evidence that the defendants committed the crimes charged. The defendants are presumed innocent until the government meets its burden in court of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”

18 U.S.C. 1341

18 U.S.C. 1343

————————————————————–

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

Federal Mail Fraud Crimes

————————————————————–

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.


Ex-Army Officers Arraigned on Charges of Allegedly Stealing Over $2.7 Million in Defense Funds

May 8, 2012

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on May 8, 2012 released the following:

Officers Allegedly Stole Government Funds While on Military Duty in Saudi Arabia

ATLANTA— Jasen Minter, 41, of Fayetteville, Georgia, was arraigned today before United States Magistrate Linda T. Walker on federal charges of conspiracy and theft of more than $2,700,000 from the U.S. government while serving as an Army captain in Saudi Arabia. Minter is charged in a federal indictment along with Louis E. Nock, 45, of Orlando, Florida, who served as a senior non-commissioned officer with Minter in Saudi Arabia. Nock was arraigned on the same charges yesterday before Judge Walker. Both defendants were released on bond.

United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates said of the case, “Military officers carry heightened responsibilities to their fellow servicemen as well as the public, including the duty to be diligent and honest with every taxpayer dollar. The Army’s mission in Iraq is simply too important for its own officers to steal critical resources from their fellow servicemen and, as alleged in this case, line their own pockets with cash.”

According to United States Attorney Yates, the charges, and other information presented in court: In 2006, then-Captain Minter and Sergeant First Class Nock were finance officers assigned to the U.S. Military Training Mission (USMTM) in Saudi Arabia. The indictment, which was returned by a federal grand jury on May 1, 2012, alleges that, while serving in Saudi Arabia, Minter and Nock embezzled over $2,700,000 from a U.S. government bank account at the Saudi Arabia American Bank (SAMBA) in Riyadh. Funds in this government account were to be used to operate the USMTM finance office, which supports U.S. troops. The indictment alleges that Minter and Nock conspired to withdraw the $2.7 million in two transactions but never delivered the monies to the finance office. Instead, they shipped it back to the United States to fund luxurious lifestyles for themselves and their families.

The charges carry a maximum possible sentence of five years in prison on the conspiracy count, 10 years in prison on each count of theft, and a fine of up to $250,000 on each count. In determining the actual sentence, the court will consider the United States Sentencing Guidelines, which are not binding but provide appropriate sentencing ranges for most offenders.

Members of the public are reminded that the indictment only contains charges. The defendants are presumed innocent of the charges, and it will be the government’s burden to prove the defendants’ guilt beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.

This case is being investigated by special agents of the Army Criminal Investigation Command, the Defense Criminal Investigative Service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Air Force Office of Special Investigation.

Assistant United States Attorney David Leta is prosecuting the case.”

US v. Jasen Minter et al

18 U.S.C. § 371

18 U.S.C. § 641

————————————————————–

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.


Twenty-One Defendants Charged for Alleged Corruption at Two Southern California DMV Offices

May 3, 2012

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on May 2, 2012 released the following:

“United States Attorney Laura E. Duffy announced today that employees at the California Department of Motor Vehicles (“DMV”) in San Diego County were charged in a criminal complaint for their involvement in a long-running bribery conspiracy that resulted in the production of hundreds of fraudulent driver licenses for applicants who had failed—or not taken—the required driver license tests.

The complaint alleges that DMV officials at the El Cajon DMV office, located at 1450 Graves Avenue, El Cajon, California, and the Rancho San Diego DMV office, located at 1901 Jamacha Road, El Cajon, California, falsely entered both “passing” written and “passing” driving test scores for applicants in exchange for bribes ranging up to $3,000 per license.

In addition to the DMV employees, 16 other defendants were charged in the complaint. According to the charging documents, these 16 other defendants are applicants who paid bribes to receive fraudulent driver licenses, or recruiters who brokered the corrupt deals for fraudulent licenses by getting money from the applicants and paying the bribes to the DMV employees. According to court documents, the corruption scheme involved the fraudulent production of both Class C (regular) and Commercial Class A driver licenses. Hundreds of applicants paid recruiters approximately $400- $500 for each fraudulent Class C license, which the conspirators produced at the El Cajon DMV. The complaint alleges that the DMV employees named in the complaint accepted bribes paid by these applicants despite the obvious public safety risk posed. For example, one DMV employee admitted to a recruiter that an applicant taking a driving test was so dangerous that she was “gonna kill someone.” The DMV employee, however, provided a fraudulent license to the dangerous applicant in exchange for a bribe the recruiter because he “need[ed] cash.”

According to the complaint, applicants seeking Commercial Class A licenses, produced at the Rancho San Diego DMV, typically paid recruiters $2,500-$3,000. Commercial Class A driver licenses allow the licensee to drive commercial vehicles weighing more than 10,000 pounds, which can cause enormous harm to the public if operated incorrectly by an unqualified driver. The complaint further alleges that DMV employees entered false passing test scores that allowed applicants to fraudulently obtain additional certifications for specific operations of the commercial vehicles, such as transporting hazardous materials or towing multiple trailers. The United States Attorney emphasized that these fraudulent certifications posed a significant threat to public safety, given that an unqualified driver could then transport hazardous materials or tow multiple trailers on the public roads.

For both Class C and Commercial Class A licenses, the recruiters told the applicants that, if they paid the fee, they would not have to take any of the required tests in order to receive a license. The complaint alleges that the recruiters made good on their claim as Jim Lynn Bean, Jeffrey Thomas Bednarek, Scott David Friedli, and Marco Beltran took advantage of their positions as DMV employees to enter fraudulent passing written and driving test scores into the DMV database. These DMV employees were responsible for conducting driving tests for driver license applicants, but by entering false information, circumvented the DMV’s driver license application process.

All 21 defendants were charged with conspiracy to commit bribery and to produce unauthorized identification documents, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371. In addition, defendants Bean, Bednarek, Friedli, and Beltran were charged with one count of bribery, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 666(a)(1)(B). The operator of the U.S. Driving School in El Cajon, Kuvan Adil Piomari, was charged with one count of bribery, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 666(a)(2). The defendants taken into custody today are expected to make their initial appearances before United States Magistrate Judge William V. Gallo on May 3, 2012.

United States Attorney Duffy commented that this criminal complaint and arrests are the result of an active, ongoing criminal investigation. If anyone in the community has information about corruption at the DMV, they are asked to contact the Federal Bureau of Investigation at 1-877-NO-BRIBE (662-7423), or the DMV’s Investigations Branch-Office of Internal Affairs at 626-851-0173.

Criminal Case No. 12MJ1576
 

Defendants
Jim Lynn Bean Age: 33
Kuvan Adil Piromari Age: 42
Jeffrey Thomas Bednarek Age: 53
Scott David Friedli Age: 32
Marco Beltran Age: 41
Gabriela Villanueva Age: 30
Bashar Asaad Azaria Age: 34
Reenan Esa Kuza Age: 29
Usman Aliyev Age: 29
Abdulmajed Alhokair Age: 21
Ahmad Alarbeed Age: 20
Mohammed Alsuwaidi Age: 18
Ali Rashid Al-Sowaidi Age: 22
Khalid Abdulaziz Al-Sowaidi Age: 22
Talal Bass Almousharji Age: 19
Virginia Pena Age: 32
Yontar Gizem Age: 19
Douri Zafer Age: 43
Asiel Bahjat Tomika Age: 30
Angel Salvador Astimibay Age: 50
Bekzad Mirhanov Age: 31

Summary of Charges

Count 1: Title 18, United States Code, Section 371—Conspiracy to Commit Bribery and to Produce Unauthorized Identification Documents—statutory maximum sentence of five years’ custody, a maximum fine of $250,000, and $100 special assessment. All defendants.

Count 2: Title 18, United States Code, Section 666(a)(1)(B)—Bribery—statutory maximum sentence of 10 years’ custody, a maximum fine of $250,000, and $100 special assessment. As to defendants: Jim Lynn Bean, Jeffrey Thomas Bednarek, Scott David Friedli, and Marco Beltran.

Count 3: Title 18, United States Code, Section 666(a)(2)—Bribery—statutory maximum sentence of 10 years’ custody, a maximum fine of $250,000, and $100 special assessment. As to defendant Kuvan Adil Piromari.

Investigating Agencies

Federal Bureau of Investigation
California Department of Motor Vehicles-Investigations Division

A complaint is not evidence that the defendants committed the crimes charged. The defendants are presumed innocent until the government meets its burden in court of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”

————————————————————–

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

Federal Mail Fraud Crimes

Federal Crimes – Appeal

————————————————————–

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.


Rothstein Associate Charged with Alleged Conspiracy to Violate the Federal Election Campaign Act, Defraud the United States, and Defraud a Financial Institution

April 10, 2012

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on April 9, 2012 released the following:

“Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida; John V. Gillies, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office; and José A. Gonzalez, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division (IRS-CID), announced the filing of charges against Steven N. Lippman, 49, of Plantation, for conspiring to commit crimes through the operation of the former Fort Lauderdale law firm of Scott W. Rothstein, called Rothstein, Rosenfeldt, and Adler, P.A. (RRA). The defendant was an attorney admitted to practice law in Florida and, in early 2005, was designated as a shareholder of RRA, but had no equity interest in the firm.

The one-count information, which was filed earlier today, charges Lippman with conspiracy to violate the Federal Election Campaign Act, to defraud the United States, and to defraud a financial institution, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §371. If convicted, the defendant faces a maximum statutory sentence of up to five years in prison.

According to the information, Lippman violated the Federal Election Campaign Act in that he was unlawfully reimbursed by RRA for certain contributions that he made to the presidential campaign of John McCain. More specifically, the information alleges that co-conspirator Rothstein and others, including defendant Lippman, attempted to dramatically increase the stature and political power of RRA on the federal, state, and local levels by making substantial political contributions to political candidates. However, since many of the attorneys and administrative personnel of RRA either had insufficient funds to contribute to the political campaigns and/or lacked the desire to contribute to the various political candidates selected by Rothstein, co-conspirator Rothstein enlisted Lippman and others to contribute to the McCain campaign by agreeing that RRA unlawfully would provide them with the funds to make the political contributions. For example, in one instance, Lippman made a $67,800 contribution to McCain-Palin Victory 2008. Lippman, in turn, received a check from RRA in the amount of $77,500, which constituted reimbursement of the funds he used to make the contribution. The check was fraudulently backdated to reflect that it was issued six days prior to the date of the actual contribution, and the memo section of the check stated “bonus.”

The information also alleges that Lippman engaged in a bank fraud scheme with Rothstein. According to the allegations in the charging document, RRA was experiencing financial difficulties and required a source of funds to maintain the law firm’s operations. Lippman maintained a bank account from a prior law firm where he had been a partner (the LVS account). Around February 2006, co-conspirator Rothstein requested that Lippman use the LVS account to float checks between and among certain bank accounts maintained by RRA, a practice commonly known as “check-kiting.” By simultaneously issuing and depositing checks between the LVS account and the RRA accounts, co-conspirator Rothstein and defendant Lippman would artificially inflate posted balances in each of the checking accounts, which allowed them to unlawfully obtain beneficial financing for RRA from financial institutions during the “float” period, i.e., the time that it took for the checks to clear. For example, the information alleges that from February 2006 through February 2008, Lippman issued checks in amounts ranging from $4,000 to $400,000, totaling approximately $10,311,688, from the LVS account. At the time many of the checks were written, there were insufficient funds in the account of LVS to cover those checks. Defendant Lippman also deposited into the LVS account checks issued from RRA accounts in amounts ranging from $37,500 to $330,000, totaling approximately $10,664,987. Lippman and other co-conspirators engaged in this fraudulent conduct to create the appearance that RRA was an affluent and successful law firm and to gain additional time to meet the financial obligations of RRA.

Lastly, the information alleges that Lippman defrauded the IRS by failing to report as income certain expense reimbursements and other reportable income he received from RRA. Among other things, the information alleges that defendant Lippman and co-conspirator Rothstein agreed that Lippman would be paid a base salary and be given an expense account for which he would be fraudulently reimbursed for personal expenditures disguised as deductible business expenses. This was done so that Lippman and RRA could avoid paying additional federal income and employment taxes. In addition, Lippman was paid from both the operating account and the payroll account of RRA but would only receive an IRS Form W-2 reflecting the money paid to him through the payroll account. Lippman would not report to the Internal Revenue Service the money paid to him by RRA for expenses.

U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer stated, “The breadth, scope, and sheer complexity of Rothstein’s $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme is mind-boggling. Its success depended, in no small part, on the complicity of his colleagues and associates, like Steven Lippman. Lippman, an attorney, is now the ninth person to face criminal charges in connection with this scheme. As this investigation continues, I am sure that more will follow.”

“The charges against Steven Lippman show our resolve to unravel all the schemes in this complex financial fraud perpetrated by convicted Ponzi schemer Scott Rothstein and his co-conspirators,” said John V. Gillies Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Miami Office. “It is disappointing that the number of people who chose wrong over right and participated with Rothstein in this massive fraud is at nine and rising.”

“With the April 15 tax deadline fast approaching, it is important for people to have confidence that when they file accurate, honest, and timely income tax returns, their neighbors will do the same,” said José A. Gonzalez, Special Agent in Charge of the IRS-Criminal Investigation, Miami Field Office. “Defendant Lippman attempted to skirt his tax obligations but got caught. IRS–CI will continue to aggressively pursue those who attempt to defraud America’s tax system.”

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the FBI and the IRS-CID. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Lawrence D. LaVecchio, Paul F. Schwartz, and Jeffrey N. Kaplan.

An information is only an accusation and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls.”

18 U.S.C. § 371

US v. Steven N Lippman – Federal Criminal Information

————————————————————–

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 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 C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Superseding Indictment Charges Former Owners of Delaware Trucking Company with Alleged Failure to File Taxes and with Conducting a $1.8 Million Fraud

March 30, 2012

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on March 29, 2012 released the following:

“WILMINGTON, DE—Charles M. Oberly, III, United States Attorney for the District of Delaware, announced today that a superseding indictment was handed down yesterday by the federal grand jury charging Donald L. Dutton, Sr. and Vicki R. Dutton, of Ellendale, Delaware, with one count of conspiracy to defraud the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) by failing to file individual and corporate tax returns (18 U.S.C. § 371) and four counts of willful failure to file tax returns (26 U.S.C. § 7203). The federal grand jury had previously charged the defendants on September 6, 2011 with one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1349) and five counts of mail fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1341).

According to the superseding indictment, the defendants conspired to defraud the IRS by failing to report approximately $1.8 million in taxable income that they earned between 2005 and 2008 as the owners and operators of trucking companies in Georgetown, Delaware called Little D. Trucking Co. Inc. and D. Dutton Trucking Co. Inc. In particular, the defendants’ allegedly filed no individual tax returns (Form 1040s) and no corporate tax returns (Form 1120s) on behalf of Little D. Trucking Co. Inc. with the federal government during this timeframe.

To conceal the income generated by the trucking companies, the defendants allegedly directed office staff to prepare false spreadsheets that inflated their business deductions. For example, the superseding indictment lists personal expenses such as jewelry, clothing, and child support, which the defendants categorized as business expenses on these spreadsheets. The defendants allegedly presented these spreadsheets to their accountant for tax preparation purposes.

The superseding indictment further charges that, between 2005 and 2009, the defendants failed to report to the Internal Revenue Service wages paid to the 15-22 truck drivers and office staff employed by their trucking companies.

The superseding indictment added the tax-related charges to prior allegations of mail fraud conspiracy and mail fraud, which involved a $1.3 million scheme to defraud Allens Family Foods (Allens). Allens was a poultry processing company based in Seaford and Harbeson, Delaware that declared bankruptcy this past June due to financial woes largely unrelated to the alleged scheme. Dutton Trucking hauled loads for Allens as an outside vendor. The superseding indictment alleges that the defendants billed Allens for trucking loads that were not actually hauled by Dutton Trucking. The Duttons allegedly paid a former Allens dispatch clerk a substantial cash kickback for her assistance in the fraud.

If convicted of the pending charges, the defendants face up to 20 years in prison on each count of mail fraud and mail fraud conspiracy and up to five years in prison for the conspiracy to defraud the IRS, in addition to possible fines and restitution. The four counts of willful failure to file tax returns are misdemeanors, each punishable by up to one year in prison.

United States Attorney Oberly stated, “To function, our federal and state governments rely upon citizens’ truly reporting their income to the Internal Revenue Service. Our office will vigorously prosecute those who seek to thwart their civic duties by failing to file returns or pay their just share.”

“The license to run a business is not a license to avoid paying taxes,” said Acting SAC Akeia Conner, IRS-Criminal Investigation, Philadelphia Field Office. “Mr. and Mrs. Dutton’s alleged misconduct, hiding income and having their business pay their purely personal expenses, cheated all Americans, since we all have to pay our fair share for the government services and protections that we enjoy.”

The case is the result of an investigation conducted by the Seaford, Delaware Police Department; the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation. The prosecution is being handled by Assistant United States Attorneys Ilana Eisenstein and Jamie McCall, District of Delaware. For further information, please contact AUSA Eisenstein at 302-573-6082 or AUSA McCall at 302-573-6079.

The charges in the indictment are only allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.”

US v Donald Lee Dutton, Sr. and Vicki R Dutton – Federal Criminal Indictment

US v Donald Lee Dutton, Sr. and Vicki R Dutton – Federal Criminal Superseding Indictment

18 U.S.C. § 371

18 U.S.C. § 1341

18 U.S.C. § 1349

26 U.S.C. § 7203

————————————————————–

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

Federal Mail Fraud Crimes

————————————————————–

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 C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Prison note details how priest allegedly conspired with mob hit man

March 30, 2012
Rev. Eugene Klein
Rev. Eugene Klein listens to his attorney talk to the news media after his first appearance in federal court last summer. (José M. Osorio, Chicago Tribune / June 22, 2011)

WSBT.com on March 30, 2012 released the following:

“By Annie Sweeney, Chicago Tribune reporter

For two years, vicious mob killer Frank Calabrese Sr. allegedly passed cupcakes, candy bars and a copy of a psalm through the food slot in his prison cell to a Roman Catholic priest who was there to give him Communion and counsel.

In a new court filing, federal prosecutors allege that Calabrese also slipped a note, tucked into religious reading materials, to the Rev. Eugene Klein, telling him how to find a valuable violin hidden in the mobster’s former Wisconsin home.

The note, seized by federal investigators from Klein’s home last year, read like a treasure trail for Klein, who was charged last summer with violating special restrictions on Calabrese that prohibited him from communicating with anyone outside the prison but his attorney and certain relatives.

“Be sure to have a little flashlight with you so you can see,” it said. “Make a right when you go into that little pull out door. Go all the way to the wall. That is where the violin is.”

Prosecutors contend that two confidants of Calabrese whose identities have not been made public schemed with Klein to gain control of the violin to prevent the government from seizing it and providing compensation to families of the mob hit man’s victims.

According to the government filing, Klein even expressed interest in buying the house to enable him and the two associates to try to find the violin, which has never been recovered.

Calabrese, 75, is serving a life sentence for his conviction in the infamous Family Secrets trial. In sentencing him, a federal judge held him responsible for 13 gangland slayings decades ago.

Klein, who was the prison chaplain at the federal prison in Springfield, Mo., has denied the charges. He is scheduled to go to trial in September in federal court in Chicago. On Thursday, his attorney vowed a vigorous fight.

“It’s all going to come down to whether this is a federal crime,” said Thomas Anthony Durkin, who has filed a motion to dismiss the charges. “He is not charged with stealing the violin. He is charged with violating (the prison restrictions). … This is not a criminal case.”

Klein, a priest for 40 years, first began meeting with Calabrese in 2009 at the federal prison as he administered Communion to him daily. But guards became concerned about the frequency of the visits given the severe restrictions on who could see Calabrese and restricted the meetings to 90 minutes on Saturdays, prosecutors said.

Klein, 63, who was twice interviewed by federal authorities before he was charged, insisted he was not “duped” by Calabrese. Nor did he deny that Calabrese passed him items while he was there, according to the government. One exchange was secretly captured on video, according to the government filing. Klein said it might have been a candy bar or a card for his ailing mother, prosecutors said.

Klein did not deny taking the note regarding the violin’s location either, according to the filing. He also allegedly told investigators that he traveled to the Chicago area to meet with the two Calabrese associates to discuss how they might get their hands on the violin.

The three allegedly believed that the instrument was worth $26 million based on information one of the two confidants had learned from a program on the Discovery Channel. They believed that the violin once belonged to entertainer Liberace. Some of the proceeds from its sale, they figured, could pay for Calabrese’s defense, Klein allegedly told the government. Klein also intended to keep some of the money for himself.

The three allegedly plotted to get inside the home, which was for sale, by asking to view the house. The plans, however, fell apart because the home had already been sold.

During the trip to the Chicago area, Klein had told prison officials that he was tending to his ill mother in St. Louis and took sick pay for that time off, prosecutors alleged.”

US v Eugene Klein – Federal Criminal Indictment

18 U.S.C. § 371

18 U.S.C. § 2232

————————————————————–

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

Federal Crimes – Be Careful

Federal Crimes – Be Proactive

Federal Crimes – Federal Indictment

————————————————————–

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 C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Two Physicians Indicted in an Alleged Conspiracy to Defraud the IRS by Concealing Their Income and Filing False Tax Returns

March 29, 2012

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on March 28, 2012 released the following:

“GREENBELT, MD—A federal grand jury has indicted cardiologist Abdul H. Fadul, age 75, and Ali Al-Attar, age 49, a doctor of internal medicine, of Alexandria and McLean, Virginia, respectively, today on charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States by attempting to hide their true income and aiding in the preparation of false tax returns.

The indictment was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Acting Special Agent in Charge Eric C. Hylton of the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation, Washington, D.C. Field Office; Special Agent in Charge Richard A. McFeely of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Special Agent in Charge Nicholas DiGiulio, Office of Investigations, Office of Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services.

“This case should serve as a warning to anyone who is tempted to cheat on their taxes,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein. “The IRS can and will pursue evidence of tax fraud and bring federal criminal charges.”

According to the indictment, Fadul and Al-Attar held joint ownership interests in nine medical practices located in Maryland and Virginia, with each medical practice having its own bank account. For tax years 2004 and 2005, Fadul and Al-Attar engaged an accounting firm in Maryland to prepare income tax returns for themselves and the joint medical practices. The defendants advised the accounting firm that it was standard practice for each of the joint medical practices to deposit the business receipts it generated, including payments from patients and insurance companies, into its own bank account. On March 26, 2004, Fadul and Al-Attar opened a joint bank account in their own names, into which they began depositing business receipts without telling their accountants.

The five-count indictment alleges that from March 26, 2004 through July 12, 2006, Fadul and Al-Attar conspired to defraud the U.S. by concealing their total income. Specifically, Fadul and Al-Attar deposited a total of over $500,000 in checks from patients and insurance companies for medical services rendered into the joint account in their names, rather than into the bank account of the medical practice that had generated the payment. The defendants then allegedly spent the money on personal items including real estate and other personal investments.

The indictment further alleges that Fadul opened a joint account with his wife and a separate account in his name only, which he then used to deposit payments from patients and insurance companies for services rendered by Fadul at medical practices he owned, including Cardio Vascular Center LLL, which Fadul owned with his wife. Fadul used the funds in both the joint account he owned with his wife and his personal account for his own enjoyment, including a $155,000 payment to the Fisher Island Club in Florida.

Fadul and Al-Attar concealed these personal accounts from the accounting firm, causing the accounting firm to prepare 2004 and 2005 income taxes for the doctors and their wives that fraudulently omitted the income the doctors had deposited into their personal accounts. Fadul and Al-Attar are both charged in the conspiracy and with aiding in the preparation of false tax returns for tax year 2005. Fadul is also charged with aiding in the preparation of false tax returns for tax years 2006 and 2007.

Fadul and Al-Attar face a maximum of five years in prison for the conspiracy. Al-Attar faces a maximum of three years in prison for aiding in the preparation of a false tax return and Fadul faces a maximum of three years in prison on each of three counts of aiding in the filing of false tax returns. No court appearance has been scheduled.

An indictment is not a finding of guilt. An individual charged by indictment is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty at some later criminal proceedings.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the IRS-CI, FBI, and HHS Office of Inspector General for their work in the investigation. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Special Assistant United States Attorney Daren Firestone and Assistant United States Attorney David I. Salem, who are prosecuting the case.”

US v Abdul H. Gadul and Ali Al-Attar – Federal Criminal Indictment

18 U.S.C. § 371

26 U.S.C. § 7206

————————————————————–

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 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 C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.