Three Family Members Indicted for Participating in Multi-Million-Dollar Scheme to Defraud Commercial Lenders and the U.S. Export-Import Bank
WASHINGTON—Three family members were indicted for their alleged participation in a scheme to defraud Miami-area lenders and the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank), announced Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer of the Southern District of Florida.
Guillermo M. Sanchez, 60, Isabel C. Sanchez, 36, and Gustavo Giral 38, all of Cutler Bay, Florida, are charged in the indictment with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering and money laundering.
According to allegations in the indictment, from 2007 through 2012, the defendants utilized companies they controlled to create fictitious invoices for sales of merchandise that never occurred. In a process called “factoring,” the defendants sold the accounts receivables to two Miami-area lenders for approximately 90 percent of the value of the merchandise listed on the alleged fake invoices. The lenders were not aware that the invoices were fake, and expected to recover the full amount owed from the purported purchasers. To perpetuate the fraud, the defendants allegedly transferred the proceeds through numerous bank accounts under their control and, in a Ponzi-style scheme, used a portion of the funds to pay off other factored invoices.
After the Miami lenders refused to extend further credit, the defendants and their co-conspirators allegedly created false invoices and shipping documents to obtain a loan guaranteed by the Ex-Im Bank. Rather than acquiring, selling and shipping American-manufactured goods as required for Ex-Im Bank-guaranteed loans, the defendants allegedly used the loan proceeds to extend the fraudulent scheme by paying off other lenders, and split the remaining funds among themselves and other co-conspirators. Ultimately, the defendants defaulted on both the factoring loans and the Ex-Im Bank loan.
Co-conspirators Fredy Moreno-Beltran, Ricardo Beato and Jorge Amad were separately charged, and each have pleaded guilty to participating in the scheme. According to his plea agreement, Moreno-Beltran owned Clientric, a purported purchaser of goods from companies controlled by the defendants. According to their plea agreements, Beato and Amad owned Approach Technologies International, a company that the defendants falsely claimed had sold nearly $2 million of American-manufactured telephone call center software to Clientric in order to obtain an Ex-Im Bank-guaranteed loan. In connection with their guilty pleas, Beato, Amad and Moreno admitted that the invoices provided to Ex-Im Bank were false.
The alleged scheme caused approximately $8 million in losses to the private lenders and nearly $2 million in losses to the United States.
The charges contained in an indictment are merely accusations, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
The case is being investigated by the Ex-Im Bank Office of Inspector General, with assistance provided by the FBI and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations. The case is being prosecuted by Senior Litigation Counsel Patrick Donley and Trial Attorney William Bowne of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section.