Article: Israeli pleads guilty to money laundering on dark web, faces 20-year sentence

Article - Media, Publications

Israeli pleads guilty to money laundering on dark web, faces 20-year sentence

Neta Bar, 02 April 2021

Tal Prihar, a 37-year old Israeli living in Brazil, pleaded guilty Wednesday to operating illegal transactions on the darknet, including purchasing firearms, heroin, and other contraband.

According to court documents, Phihar and his partner, another Israeli named Michael Phan, earned $8.4 million through running DeepDotWeb, a website that provided users with direct links to illegal darknet marketplaces. In return, Phihar and Phan received payments from the marketplaces in the form of bitcoin virtual currency.

To conceal the payments, Phihar transferred them from his bitcoin wallet to other accounts he owned in the names of shell companies. Continue reading “Article: Israeli pleads guilty to money laundering on dark web, faces 20-year sentence”

Article: WA rancher Easterday pleads guilty to stealing $244M in ‘ghost cattle’ scam

Article - Media, Publications

WA rancher Easterday pleads guilty to stealing $244M in ‘ghost cattle’ scam

KRISTIN M. KRAEMER, 31 March 2021

The president of one of the largest agricultural operations in Washington state has admitted concocting a scheme to defraud Tyson Foods and another company out of more than $244 million.

Cody A. Easterday, 49, pleaded guilty Wednesday in U.S. District Court in a case that federal prosecutors are calling a “ghost-cattle scam.”

Easterday, who’s also chief executive officer of Easterday Ranches Inc., charged the two companies under various agreements for the costs of buying and feeding 200,000 cattle, when those cattle did not actually exist, according to a U.S. Department of Justice news release. Continue reading “Article: WA rancher Easterday pleads guilty to stealing $244M in ‘ghost cattle’ scam”

Article: Texas man pleads guilty to $24.8 million PPP loan scheme involving luxury cars

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Texas man pleads guilty to $24.8 million PPP loan scheme involving luxury cars

Alison Medley,  25 March 2021

Federal investigators didn’t mince words when a Texas man admitted to using COVID-19 relief funds for lavish expenditures, including a Bentley Convertible, Porsche Macan and Corvette Stingray.

Coppell native Dinesh Sah, 55, pleaded guilty to orchestrating a $24.8 million PPP scam that used small business loans to purchase opulent homes and expensive cars, according to the Department of Justice.

“As the nation was crippled by a global pandemic, Sah fraudulently obtained over $17 million in PPP funds intended to help legitimate small businesses and spent that money on luxury cars and multiple homes,” Acting Assistant Attorney General Nicholas L. McQuaid of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division stated in response to the case.

In order to get control of millions in PPP loans, Sah submitted 15 fraudulent applications filed under different names of businesses he owned or controlled, according to the Justice Department. Through eight separate lenders, Sah managed to obtain $24.8 million in PPP loans by misrepresenting the number of employees on his payroll and amount of expenses therein. Investigators eventually discovered the incongruities on Sah’s applications, the Justice Department stated. Continue reading “Article: Texas man pleads guilty to $24.8 million PPP loan scheme involving luxury cars”