U.S. Attorney Damian Williams has claimed the men deceived American banks into believing they were the victims of someone else's fraud — and described the charges as "serious."
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Three men in Miami have been accused of defrauding banks and a cryptocurrency exchange out of more than $4 million.
The U.S. Justice Department claims they purchased digital assets on a trading platform — then "tricked" financial institutions into refunding the money.
Esteban Cabrera da Corte, Luis Hernandez Gonzalez and Asdrubal Ramirez Meza also allegedly used personal information that had been stolen from other people.
U.S. Attorney Damian Williams has claimed they deceived American banks into believing they were the victims of someone else's fraud — and described the charges as "serious."
Ricky J. Patel, who's from Homeland Security Investigations, said:
"Cabrera, Hernandez and Ramirez coordinated this large-scale operation to launder millions of dollars through cryptocurrency exchanges and U.S. banks, ultimately exploiting both the virtual currency market and the U.S. financial system."
Their alleged actions meant that the banks were deceived into reversing the transactions once they had been finalized — meaning they redeposited the money back into accounts they controlled, allowing the trio to withdraw these funds.
It's claimed they frequently made use of fake U.S. passports and drivers' licenses — and they've been accused of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and bank fraud, wire fraud, and aggravated identity theft.
The men were arrested in Florida on Tuesday, and as per the Justice Department, they were due to appear in court.