Friday, December 31, 2010

FBI’s Top Ten News Stories for the Week Ending Decembre 31, 2010

  1. Minneapolis: Redby Couple Sentenced for Second-Degree Murder
    A Redby couple was sentenced in connection to the murder of a 21-year-old man on October 1, 2009. Renee Delores Ann Smith was sentenced to 121 months in prison on one count of aiding and abetting murder in the second degree. Kelly James Maxwell was sentenced to 222 months on one count of aiding and abetting murder in the second degree. Full Story
  2. Cincinnati: Powell Man Sentenced for Selling More Than 35,000 Illegally Copied Videogames Over the Internet

Monday, December 27, 2010

Randy M. Cho Allegedly Swindled Nearly $8 Million from More Than 50 Victims in Investment Fraud Scheme

CHICAGO—A former Chicago man was charged with allegedly engaging in an investment fraud scheme, swindling nearly $8 million from more than 50 victims who were led to believe they were buying shares of stock in well-known companies. The defendant, Randy M. Cho, was charged with one count of wire fraud and one count of filing a false federal income tax return in a criminal information filed in U.S. District Court. Cho allegedly misused a significant portion of the funds he raised from investors for his own personal benefit, while using other funds he fraudulently obtained from new investors to make Ponzi-type payments to previous investors. Cho, 39, of Newton, Mass., and formerly of Chicago, will be arraigned at a later date in U.S. District Court, Patrick J. Fitzgerald, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, Robert D. Grant, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Alvin Patton, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division in Chicago, announced today.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Operation Broken Trust: Case Examples

The following are examples of enforcement actions taken as a part of Operation Broken Trust:
$485 Million Investment Scam Defrauded Thousands
Joseph Blimline pleaded guilty in the Eastern District of Texas on Aug. 31, 2010, for his role in one of North Texas’ largest oil and gas investment Ponzi schemes defrauding 7,700 investors of more than $485 million. Blimline was a majority owner of Provident Royalties, an investment company. Beginning in 2006, Blimline and others involved at Provident Royalties made false representations and failed to disclose other material facts to their investors to induce the investors into providing payments to Provident. The investors were not told that Blimline had received millions of dollars of unsecured loans and had been previously charged with securities fraud. Blimline issued approximately 20 oil and gas offerings, and used a significant amount of the money raised in these offerings to purchase oil and gas assets from earlier offerings and to pay dividends to earlier investors in order to facilitate the scheme. Blimline also pleaded guilty to charges related to a separate, but similar oil and gas scheme based in Michigan that defrauded investors out of $50 million. The criminal case against Blimline was brought by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Texas and was investigated by the FBI, in coordination with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which previously had filed a civil action to freeze the assets of Blimline and others.

FBI’s Top Ten News Stories for the Week Ending Decembre 17, 2010

  1. Portland: Federal Indictment Charges Three in Scheme to Evade Iran Embargo and Defraud the IRS with False Charitable Donations
    A jury charged Hossein Lahiji, Najmeh Vahid, and Ahmad Iranshahi in a two-count indictment for conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and to commit money laundering. The defendants allegedly transferred purported donations totaling more than $1.8 million to a Portland charity and invested the funds in Iran, in violation of the Iranian embargo. Full Story
  2. New York: Three Insiders at Public Companies and One Executive of Expert-Networking Firm Charged with Conspiring to Distribute Inside Information to the Firm's Clients

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Hal Turner entenced to 33 Months in Prison for Threatening Three Federal Appeals Court Judges in Chicago

CHICAGO—Hal Turner, an Internet radio talk show host and blogger, was sentenced today to 33 months in federal prison in federal court in Brooklyn, N.Y., for threatening to assault three federal appeals court judges in Chicago in retaliation for their 2009 ruling upholding handgun bans in Chicago and a suburb. Turner, 48, of North Bergen, N.J., has been in federal custody since he was convicted by a jury on Aug. 13, 2010, after a trial.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Jose Hernandez Sentenced to Three Years in Prison for Bribery in Probe of Crooked Permits

City Inspector Sentenced to Three Years in Prison for Bribery in Probe of Crooked Permits
CHICAGO—A City of Chicago building inspector was sentenced today to three years in federal prison after being convicted at trial in September on bribery charges for accepting two $1,000 cash bribes from a cooperating contractor and demanding two $2,000 cash bribes from developers to approve inspections at residential and commercial construction sites, federal law enforcement officials and the city's Inspector General announced today. The defendant, Jose Hernandez, was sentenced for soliciting or obtaining cash bribes totaling approximately $30,000 from contractors, developers and homeowners since at least 2005.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Donald R. Peppers Sentenced to 27 Years in Prison for Producing, Transporting, and Possessing Child Pornography

CHICAGO—A former Hoffman Estates man was sentenced yesterday to 27 years in federal prison for manufacturing, transporting, and possessing child pornography. The defendant, Donald R. Peppers, 36, pled guilty in August, admitting that he had produced a video of himself sexually molesting a 1-year-old minor knowing that it would be disseminated in interstate commerce via computer. Using an online profile in the name of "illinoisdonboy31," Peppers communicated via computer about brutally sexually molesting children, and he created and traded images of children engaged in sexually explicit conduct.

FBI Seeking Information in Alternate Billing Corporation Matter

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                          NATIONAL PRESS OFFICE
Dec. 16, 2010                                                                          (202) 324-3691

The FBI is seeking information from consumers who believe that they have been improperly charged on their telephone bill for services neither ordered nor authorized related to Alternate Billing Corp, 24078 Greenway Road, Forest Lake, Minnesota, or any of its affiliated companies or services listed below. 

Digital VMail
Durham Technology
Identity Holdings
Instant 411
Mobile 411 Plus
Safeguard My Credit
Streaming Flix
Streaming Flix - FamilyWebSafety
Streaming Flix - Iconz of Rock VIP
Streaming Flix - Mobile
Streaming Flix - National Lampoon
Streaming Flix - No Good TV Digital
Streaming Flix – UBD
Studio 127

Our inquiry is ongoing, and while we can’t provide any additional information at this time, we do need to hear from persons who believe they were improperly billed.

Friday, December 10, 2010

FBI’s Top Ten News Stories for the Week Ending Decembre 10, 2010

  1. Baltimore: Maryland Man Charged in Plot to Attack Armed Forces Recruiting Center
    Antonio Martinez, aka Muhammad Hussain, was charged with attempting to murder federal officers and employees and attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction against federal property. Full Story
  2. DOJ/Multiple Field Offices: Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force Announces Results of Largest-Ever Nationwide Operation Targeting Investment Fraud

Friday, December 3, 2010

FBI’s Top Ten News Stories for the Week Ending Decembre 3, 2010

  1. Minneapolis: Red Lake Man Sentenced for Voluntary Manslaughter
    Ryan Roy Cloud was sentenced to 78 months in prison on one count of voluntary manslaughter for killing a 27-year-old Red Lake man on February 1, 2010. Full Story
  2. New York: MS-13 Street Gang Leader Sentenced to 35 Years' Imprisonment for Murder