CHARLOTTE, N.C. – A federal prosecutor in North Carolina says a jury has convicted a South Florida man in connection with a business email compromise scheme that defrauded law firms and other companies of more than $1 million.
U.S. Attorney Dena J. King says Pierre Yvelt Almonor, 49, of Miami Gardens, was convicted of multiple charges, including engaging in a money laundering conspiracy to commit concealment money laundering, international concealment money laundering, and transactional money laundering.
“A business email compromise scheme, or BEC, is a sophisticated scam, often targeting businesses involved in wire transfer payments,” a news release from King’s office stated. “The fraud is carried out by fraudsters compromising and/or ‘spoofing’ legitimate business email accounts through social engineering or computer intrusion techniques, to cause employees of the victim company or other individuals involved in legitimate business transactions to transfer funds to accounts controlled by the scammers.”
According to trial evidence, witness testimony and documents filed with the court, from August 2014 through November 2017, Almonor arranged to have nearly $395,000 in real estate closing proceeds stolen through a business email compromise scheme.
Prosecutors said Almonor then facilitated wire transfers to Spain and South Africa totaling more than $200,000 and withdrew more than $50,000 for himself as compensation for his role in the conspiracy.
Almonor remains on bail pending sentencing.
A sentencing date has not been set. He faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, and a fine of $500,000 or twice the value of the proceeds.
Another suspect in the case, Ugo Ernest Uzomba, previously pleaded guilty to money laundering conspiracy and is also awaiting sentencing.
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