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Cocaine Dealer Sentenced to Life in Prison for Distribution, Structuring, and Money Laundering
BSA information played a key role in the investigation and prosecution of a major drug trafficker. The information allowed investigators and prosecutors to identify additional accounts as well as measures that the defendant took to hide his illicit gains.
A cocaine dealer was recently convicted and sentenced to life in prison. The defendant was convicted of conspiracy to distribute cocaine, conspiracy to structure financial transactions, structuring financial transactions, and several counts of money laundering. The defendant was ordered to forfeit property and funds, as the proceeds of his illicit activities.
The defendant was the leader of a drug organization that obtained cocaine from sources in states across the country and elsewhere. The defendant employed couriers to bring the drugs to his home, often using cars that he purchased with specially installed hiding places to conceal the drugs.
He titled a car and real property in the name of a nominee in order to hide assets. In addition, the defendant paid a nominee cash from drug proceeds, so that the nominee could pay personal expenses of the defendant. Finally, the defendant wired drug proceeds throughout the country using a phony name, and had coconspirators make cash deposits of less than $10,000 in order to avoid bank reporting requirements and to hide the source of the cash.
A financial institution noted the high volume of credits to an account of the defendant and no identifiable employment information. Investigators were able to identify transactions made to conceal his illicit activities and cross reference it with his other accounts. The information also corroborated various aliases that the defendant used.
[Published in The SAR Activity Review - Trends, Tips & Issues, Issue 18, October 2010]