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Money laundering ring extended to Mexico

Nov. 6, 2012 at 3:00 PM   |   Comments

MIAMI, Nov. 6 (UPI) -- A South Florida money laundering scheme has ties not only to Canada and Trinidad, but now Mexico, court documents show.

The Caribbean Transfers case led to $30 million in fraudulent Medicare payments that were then sent to the foreign countries by a Miami check-cashing operation. The money eventually ended up at a Cuban travel agency, prosecutors said.

The Miami Herald reported Monday Oscar L. Sanchez, 47, a Cuban-born U.S. citizen in Miami, pleaded guilty in August to a federal money laundering charge and agreed to pay the government back $10 million of the estimated $70.7 million he is accused of laundering through 70 fake medical service companies.

Vega and Felipe Ruiz, both 38, have also been charged as the operators of the check-cashing company Sanchez used to move the money out of the country.

Previously, it was thought the money had only been sent to outfits in Canada and Trinidad, but court documents show Mexican shell companies were the temporary recipient of the cash, as well, the newspaper said, the report said.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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