Worldwide cash launderer sentenced to federal jail in cyber-crime conspiracies accountable for meant lack of almost $60 million | USAO-SDGA

SAVANNAH, GA: A Canadian man who conspired to launder the tens of millions of dollars stolen from various wire transfer and bank fraud programs – including a massive online banking theft by North Korean cyber criminals – has been sentenced to nearly 12 years in federal prison.

Ghaleb Alaumary, 36, of Mississauga, Ontario, was sentenced to a total of 140 months in prison after pleading guilty to two counts of money laundering conspiracies, said David H. Estes, acting U.S. attorney for the southern district of Georgia . District Court Judge R. Stan Baker also ordered Alaumary to pay $ 30,703,946.56 in compensation to the victims and to be released under custody after completing his three-year sentence. There is no parole in the federal system.

“This defendant served as an integral channel in a network of cyber criminals who siphoned tens of millions of dollars from multiple companies and institutions around the world,” said acting US Attorney Estes. “He laundered money for a rogue nation and some of the world’s worst cybercriminals, and led a team of co-conspirators who helped fill thieves’ pockets and digital wallets. But US law enforcement agencies, in collaboration with their partners around the world, will bring fraudsters to justice who believe they can hide behind a computer screen. “

As described in unsealed court documents and trials, Alaumary and his co-conspirators used business compromise email programs, ATM withdrawals, and bank cyber-robberies to steal money from victims and then launder the money through bank accounts and digital currencies. He previously pleaded guilty to two money laundering cases in the southern Georgia district.

In the first case, filed and investigated in the southern district of Georgia, Alaumary conspired with others who sent fraudulent “fake” emails to a university in Canada in 2017 to create the appearance that the emails came from a university Construction company came out paying for a large construction project. The university, believed to be paying the construction company, transferred CAD 11.8 million (about $ 9.4 million) to a bank account controlled by Alaumary and his co-conspirators. Alaumary then arranged with individuals in the US and elsewhere to launder the stolen funds through various financial institutions.

Weeks later, Alaumary arranged several trips to Texas for a co-conspirator in the United States to impersonate wealthy bank customers in order to steal hundreds of thousands of dollars from victims ‘accounts using the victims’ stolen personally identifiable information. There was a phone call to a co-conspirator in Savannah discussing the fraud.

In the second case, relocated from the Central District of California to the Southern District of Georgia for his admission of guilt and conviction, Alaumary recruited and organized individuals to withdraw stolen cash from ATMs; provided bank accounts that received funds from bank cyber-robberies and fraud systems; and once the ill-gotten funds were in accounts he controlled, Alaumary further laundered the funds through wire transfers, cash withdrawals, and by exchanging the funds for cryptocurrency. Funds included a cyber attack on a Maltese bank in 2019 by North Korea. Other victims of Alaumary’s crimes have included banks headquartered in India, Pakistan and Malta, as well as corporations in the US and UK, individuals in the US and a professional football club in the UK

“International money launderers provide critical services to cyber criminals, helping hackers and scammers avoid their illegal profits and hide their illegal profits,” said Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. of the Department of Justice’s Department of Criminal Investigation. “Businesses large and small, a university, banks and others lost tens of millions of dollars on this plan. Alaumary’s verdict today reflects how seriously the Justice Department takes the critical role money launderers play in global cybercrime. “

“The conviction of the defendant in this case speaks to the value of cross-border investigative cooperation,” said Steven R. Baisel, SAIC Field Office of US Intelligence Atlanta. “Despite the complex, international nature of this criminal enterprise, the accused and his co-conspirators were brought to justice.”

“This case exemplifies our relentless determination to hold criminals accountable, no matter how sophisticated their crimes may seem,” said Phil Wislar, acting special agent for the FBI Atlanta. “The arrest and conviction of cybercriminals like Alaumary, who feel safe behind a computer screen, is only possible through persistent investigative efforts by the FBI and our close cooperation with our US and international partners.”

Alaumary is the fourth defendant in the investigation to be convicted in the southern district of Georgia. Uchechi Ohanaka, Kelvin Desangles and Jennal Aziz had previously pleaded guilty to fraud in federal court and were sentenced to more than 200 months in prison.

The cases were investigated by the U.S. Intelligence Savannah Resident Office, with assistance from the Los Angeles Field Office and Global Investigative Operations Center, the FBI and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and followed up by the Criminal Investigation Department of the U.S. District Attorney’s Southern District of Georgia, Senior Trial Attorney Mona Sedky, of the US Department of Justice’s cybercrime and intellectual property division, and Assistant US Attorney Khaldoun Shobaki, of the US Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.

John McAfee’s Ominous Suicide Tweets Stir Epstein-Type Conspiracies After Dying in Jail

The death of computer entrepreneur John McAfee in a Spanish prison, reported as suicide by local media, enraged American conspiracy theorists when they picked up 9-month-old tweets saying he feared for his life.

McAfee, a British American wanted for tax evasion in the United States, has long been a controversial figure: he is credited with creating the billion dollar antivirus software industry, accused of manipulating the cryptocurrency markets, and wanted by police investigating a murder in Belize .

In Spain, the Catalan Justice Ministry said prison doctors did not resuscitate McAfee and that everything points to suicide, the BBC reports, based on an earlier report in the Spanish newspaper El Pais. A Spanish judge had previously approved a US extradition request so that he could be charged with tax evasion.

The Catalan statement did nothing to quell speculation on the American internet, given McAfee’s tweets fearful that he would suffer the same fate as Jeffrey Epstein, the convicted pedophile who died of suicide in a New York prison in 2019.

McAfee’s tweet on October 15, 2020 while in a Barcelona prison read: “I’m happy in here. I have friends. The food is good. All is well. You know that if I hang myself, a la Epstein, it won’t be my fault. “

I am satisfied here. I have friends.

The food is good. All is well.

Know if I hang myself like Epstein, it’s not my fault.

– John McAfee (@officialmcafee) October 15, 2020

Epstein’s death has been the focus of wild speculation by QAnon conspirators who claim He was murdered to protect his powerful friends and allies. QAnon supporters believe America is ruled by an elite group of Satan’s worshiping pedophiles.

Another McAfee tweet dated November 30, 2019 read: “I get subtle messages from US officials who end up saying, ‘We’re coming for you McAfee! We will kill you ‘. I got a tattoo today just in case. If I killed myself, I didn’t. I was beaten up. Check out my right arm. “

About an hour after his death was announced, McAfee officials said Instagram posted a picture of a bold letter “Q”

Twitter user @_legrek shared a collage of McAfee’s social media posts and shared the hashtag “#johnmcafeedidntkillhimself” in a second tweet.

McAfee was arrested in Spain on October 6, 2020 on allegations of tax evasion. He was found dead shortly after a Spanish Supreme Court approved his extradition to the United States. He could have appealed the extradition decision. The final decision would have required the approval of the Spanish cabinet.

Prosecutors said McAfee evaded taxes on undisclosed income from 2014 to 2018. The income allegedly came from lectures, the promotion of cryptocurrencies, while he advised and sold the rights to his life story. One indictment alleged that he hid land, vehicles, a yacht and other assets by registering them in other people’s names. If convicted, he faces up to 30 years imprisonment.

In an October 2020 tweet, antivirus software creator John McAfee wrote, “You know it’s not my fault if I hang myself, a la Epstein. In this photo, McAfee is speaking to journalists at the China Internet Security Conference in Beijing on August 16, 2016.
Fred Dufour / AFP / Getty

In a virtual court hearing in June, McAfee said the charges against him were politically motivated. He believed he would spend the rest of his life in prison if the Spanish authorities extradited him to the United States.

In January 2019, McAfee posted a video claiming he evaded U.S. judicial authorities by living on a boat in international waters.

“I haven’t paid taxes for eight years. I have not submitted any statements. Every year I tell the IRS, ‘I am not filing a statement, I have no intention of doing this, come and find me,’ ”he said in a Twitter Video.

In a tweet on January 3, 2019, he wrote: “I haven’t filed a tax return for 8 years. Why? 1: Taxation is illegal. 2: I’ve already paid tens of millions and received Jack S *** in the form of services. 3. I’m done making money. I live on McAfee Inc. money. My net income is negative. But I am a primary target for the IRS. Here I am.”

In March, New York South District Attorneys charged McAfee with conspiracy to commit fraud and money laundering.

The charges alleged that McAfee and his bodyguard Jimmy Gale Watson Jr. bought cryptocurrency assets before promoting them to McAfee’s over millions of Twitter followers. The couple reportedly sold the assets after McAfee’s tweets rose in value.


John McAfee, shown speaking to reporters in 2012 after being deported from Guatemala to the United States, likely died of suicide on Wednesday. His death was the subject of conspiracy theories mirroring those that circled Jeffrey Epstein following the account of his death.
PAULA BUSTAMANTE / AFP / Getty

The charges further alleged that cryptocurrency startups paid the duo over $ 11 million to promote their assets on Twitter. These payments were never communicated to McAfee Twitter followers or buyers of the cryptocurrency, the US Department of Justice said.

In November 2012, McAfee went into hiding after police in the Central American country of Belize sought him out as a “person of interest” in the murder of the American Gregory Faull. Faull and McAfee were both living on the coastal island of Ambergris Caye when Faull was found dead in a pool of blood.

McAfee denied killing Faull. Belize Prime Minister Dean Barrow called McAfee “paranoid” and publicly urged him to cooperate with the police.

“I don’t mean to be rude, but he seems extremely paranoid, I would go as far as to say nonsense,” said Barrow.

The Belizean police arrested McAfee in early 2012 for alleged possession of weapons and drugs. The police later released him without charge.

Newsweek contacted the Justice Department for comment.

Update (June 23rd, 2021, 8:50 pm): This article has been updated to include additional information on McAfee’s past with cryptocurrency and the Belize incident.

Hawaii man sentenced to greater than 24 years for drug trafficking, cash laundering conspiracies

HONOLULU (KHON2) – Justin Wilcox, 39, from Kailua, Hawaii, was sentenced to more than 24 years in prison on Thursday June 17 for his role in conspiracies to distribute methamphetamine and cocaine and to commit money laundering had played.

Wilcox was sentenced to simultaneous prison terms of 295 months – 24.58 years – and 240 months – 20 years – and was also given five and three years of post-imprisonment supervised releases, both of which are to be served.

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Acting US attorney Judith Phillips said, according to court and court documents, “Wilcox was the leader and organizer of the Oahu drug conspiracy that operated in Hawaii and involved more than five members with drugs from a Las Vegas, Nevada source.”

Wilcox was held responsible by the judgment court for the possession and distribution of 3,880 grams of pure methamphetamine and 1,393 grams of cocaine.

Honolulu man charged with drug trafficking, firearms charge

According to the Hawaii District Attorney’s Office, “the court found that Wilcox used its Kailua clothing company, Armed and Dangerous, as a covert business to unload cash from drugs.” Wilcox was asked to pay $ 127,000 to confiscate funds he received through drug trafficking.

Federal police officers confiscated 8.4 kilograms (18.52 pounds) of methamphetamine, 1.39 kilograms (3.06 pounds) of cocaine, $ 160,000 in cash, two firearms and ammunition during their investigation against Wilcox.

Fentanyl from Mexican cartels coming to Hawaii as overdoses rise

Wilcox pleaded guilty to conspiracy in 2019 to distribute and possess 50 grams or more of methamphetamine and 500 grams or more of cocaine, as well as conspiracy to commit money laundering, according to the Hawaii District Attorney.

Eight people have been convicted of participating in the drug conspiracy, and officials say a ninth man has also been convicted of drug offenses. All nine people received sentences of 41 months or more and five of them, including Wilcox, received sentences of more than 10 years.

The Drug Enforcement Agency and the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigations Division were involved in the investigation, and US assistant attorneys Mark Inciong and Michael Albanese are pursuing the case.