Maryland Man Sentenced to Prison in Bank Scam That Defrauded Victims Out of Over $560,000

A Maryland resident was sentenced today to 33 months in prison for defrauding victims into paying for falsified bank documents from a bank in the Dominican Republic. 

Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez for the Middle District of Florida, and Assistant Director in Charge Nancy McNamara of the FBI’s Washington Field Office made the announcement.

Mohammed Mohajer, 63, of Silver Spring, Maryland, previously pleaded guilty in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida to one count of wire fraud.  U.S. District Judge Sheri Polster Chappell presided over the sentencing and also ordered Mohajer to serve three years of supervised release following his prison sentence, forfeit $194,000, and pay restitution in the amount of $565,000 to two victims.  

According to the defendant’s admissions, Mohajer falsely told victims that he had a relationship with a bank in the Dominican Republic.  He represented to the victims that in exchange for an up-front payment, he could help them access credit at the bank, and that the bank would issue SWIFT interbank messages to the victims’ designated banks showing that the victims had access to those funds.  In fact, Mohajer had no relationship with the Dominican bank and provided the victims with fake documents that falsely showed that their promised bank documentation had been transmitted.  In total, Mohajer defrauded the victims out of $565,000. 

The investigation was conducted by the FBI.  Trial Attorney Blake Goebel of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Jesus Casas of the Middle District of Florida prosecuted the case. 

If you believe that you have been a victim of this or a similar fraud scheme, please contact the FBI Washington Field Office at (202) 278-2000.  

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Author: September 4, 2018