Article: Major players plead guilty in ‘funnel account’ scam at Rio Rico bank

Article - Media, Publications

Major players plead guilty in ‘funnel account’ scam at Rio Rico bank

Nogales International, 2 May 2021

Three key members of a scheme to transfer organized crime proceeds from the United States to Mexico through so-called “funnel accounts” opened at the Wells Fargo bank in Rio Rico have now pleaded guilty to federal charges.

The latest guilty plea, which was accepted by a judge during a hearing on Wednesday at U.S. District Court in Tucson, was from Carlos Antonio Vasquez, the former manager of the bank branch. He agreed to plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering – a crime that normally carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, but for which Vasquez will receive no more than 34 months (2 years, 10 months) in exchange for his plea.

The conspiracy reportedly lasted from February 2017 until August 2019. Continue reading “Article: Major players plead guilty in ‘funnel account’ scam at Rio Rico bank”

Article: Head of volleyball body targeted by Brazilian fraud probe

Article - Media, Publications

Head of volleyball body targeted by Brazilian fraud probe

MAURICIO SAVARESE, 20 May 2021

SAO PAULO (AP) — The president of the International Volleyball Federation is being investigated in his native Brazil as part of a wider fraud probe launched on Thursday. Rio de Janeiro police and state prosecutors said in a statement that Ary Graça, who has headed FIVB since 2012, and nine other people are suspected of tax fraud, money laundering and identity fraud.

Investigators say Graça used money from a sponsorship deal between Banco do Brasil and the Brazilian Volleyball Confederation to pay for contracts with suspected shell companies in the city of Saquarema, outside Rio de Janeiro. Graça was head of the Brazilian body until 2014. A former mayor of the city was also charged. Continue reading “Article: Head of volleyball body targeted by Brazilian fraud probe”