(WASHINGTON) Justice Dept Court Report: Puerto Rico Mayor Pleads Guilty to Accepting Bribes in Exchange for Millions in Municipal Contracts #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Dec.03: Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow for the District of Puerto Rico, and Acting Assistant Director Jay Greenberg of the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division made the announcement.

#AceDailyNews DOJ Court Report: Contractor Arrested for Paying Bribes: A mayor pleaded guilty yesterday in Puerto Rico to engaging in a bribery scheme in which he received cash payments in exchange for awarding municipal contracts to a particular company (Company A). Relatedly, a Puerto Rico contractor was arrested today for allegedly paying bribes and kickbacks to the mayor.

Felix Delgado-Montalvo, 40, was the mayor of and highest-ranking government official in the municipality of Cataño. Delgado-Montalvo resigned his position as mayor on Tuesday. According to court documents, Delgado-Montalvo unjustly enriched himself by accepting bribes, including cash payments from a particular person, whose business, Company A, would then benefit by being rewarded municipal contracts, including a contract worth nearly $50,000. As part of his plea agreement, Delgado-Montalvo agreed to forfeit $105,820 as proceeds of his illegal conduct.

Relatedly, Mario Villegas-Vargas, 42, of Gurabo, who owned an asphalt and paving company in Puerto Rico, was indicted for allegedly paying kickbacks and bribes to Delgado-Montalvo in exchange for valuable municipal contracts. According to the indictment, beginning in or around June 2017, Villegas-Vargas paid kickbacks and bribes in exchange for Delgado-Montalvo exerting his influence on municipal officials in Cataño, resulting in Villegas-Vargas’s business receiving over $9.9 million in municipal contracts.

Delgado-Montalvo pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to solicit and accept bribes. He is scheduled to be sentenced on March 8, 2022, and faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison. Chief Judge Raúl M. Arias-Marxuach for the U.S. District Court for the District of Puerto Rico will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Villegas-Vargas is charged with conspiracy to pay bribes, bribery, and use of an interstate facility in aid of racketeering. If convicted of all counts, Villegas-Vargas faces a maximum total penalty of 20 years in prison. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

The investigation was conducted by the FBI’s San Juan Field Office. 

The cases are being prosecuted by Trial Attorney Ryan R. Crosswell of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Scott H. Anderson and Nicholas W. Cannon of U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Puerto Rico.

An indictment is merely an allegation, and Villegas-Vargas is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

#AceNewsDesk report ……………..Published: Dec.03: 2021:

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#bribery, #contracts, #doj, #guilty, #puerto-rico, #washington

(NEW YORK) Justice Court Report: Jury convicts two former ‘Wall Street Bank Traders’ of wire-fraud #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Aug.06: These defendants undermined public confidence in U.S. commodities markets by manipulating prices to create the false appearance of supply and demand,” said Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “This verdict shows that the Department of Justice is committed to holding accountable those who line their pockets by manipulating our financial markets through fraud.”

#AceDailyNews report on a federal jury who convicted two Connecticut men today for engaging in a multi-year fraud scheme to manipulate U.S. commodities markets for publicly traded precious metals futures contracts….

According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, Edward Bases, 59, of New Canaan, a former senior trader employed at Deutsche Bank and Bank of America in New York, and John Pacilio, 57, of Southport, a former senior trader employed at Bank of America and Morgan Stanley in New York, fraudulently pushed market prices up or down by routinely placing large “spoof” orders in the precious metals futures markets that they did not intend to fill.

Bases and Pacilio did so in order to manipulate prices for their own gain and the banks’ gain, and to defraud other traders on the Commodity Exchange Inc. (COMEX) and the New York Mercantile Exchange Inc. (NYMEX), both of which are exchanges run by the CME Group Inc. (CME).

Court documents and witness testimony also showed that Bases and Pacilio taught other traders how to engage in the practice of spoofing, which involves placing orders on the exchange that, at the time they were placed, were not intended to be executed. For example, electronic chat messages introduced as evidence during trial demonstrated that, while he was placing deceptive trades, Bases stated, “that does show you how easy it is to manipulate it sometimes . . . I know how to ‘game’ this stuff.” Evidence introduced at trial also included electronic chat messages from Pacilio stating, “I just put in 500 lots to spoof the gold,” and “if you spoof this it really moves.”

“Illegally moving market prices in a direction that suits individual interests is a quick way to lose investor confidence and rack up federal criminal charges,” said Acting Assistant Director in Charge Jacqueline Maguire of the FBI’s New York Field Office. “The FBI will continue to pursue those who manipulate our financial markets.”

As a result of Bases’s and Pacilio’s scheme, other market participants, some of whom testified at trial, were induced to trade at prices, quantities, and times that they otherwise would not have traded. Bases and Pacilio engaged in this conduct despite having received and been trained on bank policies prohibiting fraud and deceptive trading practices.

Bases was convicted of conspiracy to commit wire fraud affecting a financial institution and wire fraud affecting a financial institution. Pacilio was convicted of conspiracy to commit wire fraud affecting a financial institution, wire fraud affecting a financial institution, and commodities fraud. Conspiracy to commit wire fraud and wire fraud affecting a financial institution carry a maximum sentence of 30 years’ imprisonment per count. Commodities fraud carries a maximum sentence of 25 years’ imprisonment. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Acting Principal Assistant Chief Avi Perry and Trial Attorneys Scott Armstrong and John Liolos of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section are prosecuting the case. The FBI’s New York Field Office investigated this case.

The Criminal Division’s Fraud Section plays a pivotal role in the Justice Department’s fight against white collar crime around the country, and its Market Integrity & Major Frauds Unit is the national leader in prosecuting fraud and manipulation in the U.S. commodity markets.

#AceNewsDesk report ……….Published: Aug.06: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#contracts, #doj, #fraud, #markets, #new-york

(HOUSTON) Justice Dept Report: A dual US-Venezuelan citizen & former official of Citgo Petroleum Corp has ‘pleaded guilty’ on Monday in connection to ‘International Bribery & Laundering’ during 2013 – 2019 of at least $7-million in contracts #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Mar.24: According to court documents, between approximately 2013 and 2019, Jose Luis De Jongh Atencio (De Jongh), 48, a former procurement officer and manager in Citgo’s Special Projects Group, accepted more than $7 million in bribe payments from businessmen including Jose Manuel Gonzalez Testino (Gonzalez), a dual U.S.-Venezuelan citizen, and Tulio Anibal Farias Perez (Farias), a Venezuelan national and Houston resident, and others in exchange for assisting the businessmen and related companies in procuring contracts with Citgo, and providing them with other business advantages:

Former Venezuelan Official Pleads Guilty in Connection with International Bribery and Money Laundering Scheme: ‘A dual U.S.-Venezuelan citizen and former official at Citgo Petroleum Corporation, a Houston-based subsidiary of Venezuela’s state-owned and state-controlled energy company Petróleos de Venezuela S.A. (PDVSA), pleaded guilty Monday in connection with his role in laundering millions of dollars in bribes and corruptly providing business advantages to multiple individuals who obtained contracts with Citgo and PDVSA’

De Jongh admitted to directing bribe payments from Gonzalez, Farias, and others into bank accounts in the names of shell companies that he controlled in Panama and Switzerland. In some instances, he also directed the creation of fake invoices to justify the payments. De Jongh laundered the bribe proceeds through U.S. and international bank accounts and used the funds to purchase real property located in the Houston area. In addition to monetary payments, De Jongh also received bribes in the form of gifts and other things of value from Gonzalez, Farias, and others including tickets to a 2014 World Series Game, Super Bowl XLIX in 2015, and a U2 concert. Gonzalez and Farias also entered guilty pleas in connection with the case.

“Jose Luis De Jongh Atencio accepted millions of dollars in bribe payments — placing law-abiding individuals and companies at a competitive disadvantage — and then laundered those bribe payments into the United States to fund his lavish lifestyle,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Nicholas L. McQuaid of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “This guilty plea demonstrates the commitment of the department and our law enforcement partners to hold accountable individuals who engage in corruption and use our financial system to promote and launder the proceeds of their crimes.”

“Foreign bribery schemes like this pose a significant threat to the public trust and fair-trade practices,” said Special Agent in Charge Mark Dawson of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Houston. “This plea is a step in the right direction, but we will continue to level the playing field for companies and consumers by aggressively investigating individuals and corporations who violate the FCPA and misuse our financial system.”

De Jongh pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. He is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Gray H. Miller on Aug. 19, and faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. Judge Miller will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors. In addition, as part of his plea, De Jongh also agreed to forfeit over $3 million seized from his bank accounts and 15 properties that he purchased with his corrupt proceeds.

To date, the Justice Department has announced charges against 28 individuals, 22 of whom have pleaded guilty, as part of a larger, ongoing investigation by the U.S. government into bribery at PDVSA.

HSI Houston is conducting the ongoing investigation with assistance from HSI Boston and Miami.

Trial Attorney Sarah E. Edwards and Assistant Chief Sonali D. Patel of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Robert S. Johnson and John P. Pearson of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Texas are prosecuting the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kristine E. Rollinson is handling the forfeiture aspects of the case.

The Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs, the Swiss Federal Office of Justice and the Office of the Attorney General of Panama also provided assistance.

The Fraud Section is responsible for investigating and prosecuting all Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) matters. Additional information about the Justice Department’s FCPA enforcement efforts can be found at www.justice.gov/criminal/fraud/fcpa.

#AceNewsDesk report ……….Published: Mar.24: 2021:

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#bribery, #corruption, #contracts, #houston, #laundering, #texas