Man Allegedly Claiming to be the Son of the President of the Congo Indicted for Federal Wire Fraud Crimes

May 10, 2013

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on May 9, 2013 released the following:

“SAN FRANCISCO— Earlier this week, a federal grand jury in San Francisco indicted Blessed Marvelous Herve, a/k/a Rodrigue Herve Ngandou, a/k/a Herve Rodrigue Ngandou, a/k/a Blessed Roll Herve, of San Francisco, for wire fraud, United States Attorney Melina Haag announced.

According to the indictment, Herve, 41, devised and executed a scheme to defraud victims of approximately $1.6 million. Herve claimed that his father was the president of the Congo and a multi-billionaire, but that the United States government had seized Herve’s assets, in excess of $43,000,000. Herve promised to pay bonus sums of more than $1,500,000 to victims in exchange for the victims’ financial support of Herve’s quest to obtain the $43,000,000 that the government purportedly had seized.

Herve also claimed that as a result the federal court case involving his seized funds, he was sent to federal prison from 2009 through 2012. During this time, Herve solicited funds from victims to assist with his alleged ongoing court proceedings and his incarceration. Herve again promised full repayment of victims’ money plus large bonuses upon the completion of his federal case and release of his funds. Specifically, in October 2012, Herve solicited and received $47,000 from a victim by falsely claiming that he needed the money to pay the Internal Revenue Service to satisfy the final judgment entered against him.

According to a criminal complaint filed in the same matter further, one of the victims was a real estate agent to whom Herve promised that his father, the multi-billionaire president of the Congo, would purchase tens of millions of dollars in real estate. That victim gave Herve tens of thousands of dollars to assist in the purported father’s real estate tours, such as the rental of bulletproof limousines. The criminal complaint alleges that to lure in the victims and bolster his credibility, Herve showed various documents, such as a letter written to him from a United States Senator, copies of awards of recognition he received from the City and County of San Francisco, and a certificate of Special Congressional Recognition from a Member of Congress. When the victims ran out of money, Herve claimed that he was being deported to Puerto Rico and was not heard from again.

Herve, born in the Republic of Congo, was granted asylum in the United States in 1999 and became a United States citizen earlier this year.

Herve was arrested on a criminal complaint on April 24, 2013, in San Francisco, and he made his initial appearance in federal court in San Francisco the following day. He is currently being held in custody. The defendant’s next scheduled appearance is May 22, 2013, at 11:00 a.m. for further detention proceedings before Magistrate Judge Nathanael Cousins. Herve’s first appearance in district court is scheduled before Judge John Tigar on May 31, 2013 at 9:30 a.m.

The maximum statutory penalty for wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1343, is 20 years’ imprisonment and a fine of $250,000. However, any sentence following conviction would be imposed by the court after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.

Hallie Hoffman is the Assistant U.S. Attorney who is prosecuting the case with the assistance of Elizabeth Garcia. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Department of Homeland Security.

Please note, an indictment contains only allegations against an individual and, as with all defendants, Herve must be presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.”

Federal Wire Fraud Crimes – 18 U.S.C. 1343

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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

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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.


Taiwan Aftermarket Auto Lights Manufacturer and Its Chairman Indicted for Alleged Participation in Price-Fixing Conspiracy

December 1, 2011

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on November 30, 2011 released the following:

“WASHINGTON— A federal grand jury in San Francisco returned a superseding indictment yesterday against a Taiwan aftermarket auto lights manufacturer, its U.S.-based subsidiary distributor and its chairman for participating in an international conspiracy to fix the prices of aftermarket auto lights, the Department of Justice announced. Aftermarket auto lights are incorporated into an automobile after its original sale, often as repairs following a collision or as accessories and upgrades.

The one-count felony superseding indictment, filed today in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, charges that Eagle Eyes Traffic Industrial Co. Ltd., which is based in Tainan County, Taiwan, participated in a conspiracy to fix the prices of aftermarket auto lights in the United States and elsewhere from about July 2001 to about September 2008. The indictment also charges Eagle Eyes’ highest-ranking officer, Chairman Yu-Chu Lin, aka David Lin, for his participation in the conspiracy from about July 2001 to about September 2008. Lin is a resident of Taiwan. E-Lite Automotive Inc., Eagle Eyes’ U.S. subsidiary based in Chino, Calif., is also charged in the indictment for its participation in the conspiracy from about March 2006 to about September 2008. Today’s indictment supersedes an indictment filed on July 19, 2011, against the second-highest-ranking officer of Eagle Eyes, Vice Chairman Homy Hong-Ming Hsu.

“The Antitrust Division will continue to crack down on international price-fixing conspiracies that target U.S. businesses and consumers,” said Sharis A. Pozen, Acting Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division.

According to the indictment, Eagle Eyes, E-Lite, Lin, Hsu and co-conspirators participated in a conspiracy in which the participants met and agreed to charge prices of aftermarket auto lights according to jointly determined formulas. The participants in that conspiracy issued list price announcements to customers in accordance with the jointly determined price structure, and collected and exchanged information on prices for the purpose of monitoring and enforcing adherence to the conspiracy. The department said that the conspirators met in Taiwan and the United States for their discussions.

Including Eagle Eyes, E-Lite and Lin, four companies and four individuals have been charged to date in connection with the department’s ongoing investigation into the aftermarket auto lights industry. On Nov. 15, 2011, Maxzone Vehicle Lighting Corp., a U.S. distributor of aftermarket auto lights, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to pay a $43 million criminal fine for its participation in the conspiracy. On Oct. 4, 2011, Sabry Lee (U.S.A.) Inc., a U.S. distributor of aftermarket auto lights, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to pay a $200,000 criminal fine for its participation in the conspiracy. On March 29, 2011, Polo Shu-Sheng Hsu, the former president and CEO of Maxzone, was sentenced to serve 180 days in prison and to pay a $25,000 criminal fine for his role in the conspiracy. Chien Chung Chen, aka Andrew Chen, the former executive vice president of Sabry Lee, pleaded guilty for his participation in the conspiracy on June 7, 2011. He is currently scheduled to be sentenced on July 17, 2012.

Eagle Eyes, E-Lite and Lin are charged with price fixing in violation of the Sherman Act which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $1 million fine for individuals and $100 million fine for corporations. The maximum fines may be increased to twice the gain derived from the crime or twice the loss suffered by the victims of the crime, if either of those amounts is greater than the statutory maximum fine.

This case is part of an ongoing joint investigation being conducted by the Department of Justice Antitrust Division’s San Francisco Office and the FBI in San Francisco.”

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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

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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.


Barry Bonds’ Obstruction Conviction in Steroids Probe Upheld by Federal Judge

August 29, 2011

Bloomberg on August 26, 2011 released the following:

“By Peter Blumberg

Barry Bonds, Major League Baseball’s home-run record holder, lost a bid to overturn his conviction for obstruction of justice in a government probe of steroid use by athletes, according to a court filing.

U.S. District Judge Susan Illston in San Francisco issued a ruling yesterday denying the slugger’s request for an acquittal and refusing to grant a new trial.

Illston rejected Bonds’s argument that there was no crime in his 146-word answer to a grand jury about whether his trainer Greg Anderson ever gave him anything that required an injection with a syringe. His attorney, Dennis Riordan, said at an Aug. 25 hearing before Illston that the former San Francisco Giants outfielder took about 75 seconds to respond to prosecutors’ direct question and eventually answered “no.”

“Defendant repeatedly provided nonresponsive answers to questions about whether Anderson had ever provided him with injectables, resulting in the prosecuting attorneys asking clarifying question after clarifying question, and even once resulting in one prosecutor interrupting another who was about to move on to a new topic in order to clarify defendant’s mixed responses,” Illston wrote in her ruling. “An evasive answer about an issue material to the grand jury is not necessarily rendered immaterial by the later provision of a direct answer, even if that direct answer is true.”

Convicted in April

Bonds, 47, was convicted in April by a federal jury in San Francisco of obstructing a U.S. probe of steroid use by professional athletes. Jurors were unable to agree on whether Bonds lied when he told a grand jury in 2003 that he didn’t knowingly take steroids, didn’t take human growth hormone and didn’t receive injections by Anderson. A mistrial was declared on those counts.

Riordan didn’t immediately respond to a phone message seeking comment on the ruling after regular business hours.

Bonds broke Hank Aaron’s record of 755 career home runs in August 2007. He was indicted in November of that year for allegedly lying to a 2003 grand jury about steroids use. He was the first Major League ballplayer to be charged in a years-long federal probe of steroid use in professional sports.

Bonds’s attorneys said at trial that he truthfully testified that he received performance-enhancing substances from Anderson without knowing what they were because the drugs were new at the time and Anderson told him one was flaxseed oil.

In the grand jury proceedings, Bonds didn’t say yes or no when asked if Anderson ever gave him anything “that required a syringe to inject yourself with.”

‘One Doctor’

He responded that he “only had one doctor touch me” and he didn’t talk baseball with his trainer or “get into other people’s business.” Bonds said that’s what kept his friendship with Anderson going.

“I became a celebrity child with a famous father,” Bonds told the grand jury, referring to his father, Bobby Bonds, a three-time All-Star who played for eight teams including the Giants and the New York Yankees. “I just don’t get into other people’s business because of my father’s situation, you see.”

At the Aug. 25 hearing, Assistant U.S. Attorney Merry Jean Chan argued that Bonds could have answered yes or no, “but instead went on this exploration of his relationship with Greg Anderson” and engaged in “rambling that the jury found was given to evade.”

Bonds’s eventual answer of “no” to the question was untruthful “in light of all the evidence at trial” including testimony from his former personal shopper who said she saw Bonds receiving an injection from Anderson, Chan said.

The case is U.S. v. Bonds, 07-00732, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California (San Francisco).”

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 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.

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Ninth Taiwanese Executive Charged in Alleged Global Price-Fixing Scheme

October 21, 2010

A federal grand jury in San Francisco returned an indictment against a former executive of a Taiwan thin-film transistor liquid crystal display (TFT-LCD) producer for participating in a global conspiracy to fix prices of TFT-LCD panels, the Department of Justice announced last week.

The indictment, returned in U.S. District Court in San Francisco last Thursday, alleges that Hsin-Tsung Wang participated in a conspiracy to fix the prices of TFT-LCD panels sold worldwide. Wang, a resident of Taiwan and the former vice president of sales and marketing of Chi Mei Optoelectronics Corporation, is charged with participating in the conspiracy from at least as early as September 14, 2001, and continuing at least until December 1, 2006.

However, the fact that the government did not charge Mr. Wang until now conveys the inference that perhaps the government did not have enough evidence to indict Mr. Wang until recently. Most likely, an individual that has already been indicted decided to work with the government in exchange for a lesser sentence, and in doing so, attempted to blame others in the alleged conspiracy.

TFT-LCD panels are used in computer monitors and notebooks, televisions, mobile phones and other electronic devices. By the end of the alleged conspiracy period, the worldwide market for TFT-LCD was valued at $70 billion. Companies directly affected by the LCD price-fixing conspiracy include some of the largest computer and television manufacturers in the world, including Apple, Dell, and Hewlett Packard.

According to the one-count felony charge, Wang and co-conspirators allegedly carried out the conspiracy by agreeing to fix prices of TFT-LCD panels during secret meetings and issuing price quotations in accordance with the agreements reached. As a part of the conspiracy, Wang is also alleged to have exchanged information on sales of TFT-LCD panels for the purpose of monitoring and enforcing adherence to the agreed-upon prices.

Including this filing, 20 executives and eight companies have been charged in the Department’s ongoing investigation into price fixing in the LCD industry. As a result of this investigation, to date, more than $890 million in criminal fines have been obtained.

Wang is charged with violating the Sherman Act, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $1 million fine for individuals. The maximum fine may be increased to twice the gain derived from the crime or twice the loss suffered by the victims if either of those amounts is greater than the statutory maximum fine.

The Sherman Act was promulgated in response to antitrust violations and it’s goal is to protect a free market. However, the government seems to pick and choose which industries to target and only does so when the violation is obvious.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, Interpol Litigation, International Extradition and OFAC Litigation.

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.

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