Moldovan Man Sentenced for in Wire Fraud Conspiracy
BUFFALO, N.Y. – U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr., announced today that Iurie Stratenco, 26, a citizen of Moldova, who was convicted of wire fraud, was sentenced to eight months in prison by U.S. District Court Judge Richard J. Arcara. The defendant was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $20,000.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross, who handled the case, stated that the defendant used a fraudulent passport from Denmark in the name of Christian Bendtner, to open up several bank accounts in the Buffalo area. Stratenco then placed false advertisements on eBay for “Can-Am Spyder” and “Honda Goldwing” motorcycles. The defendant directed interested buyers to wire money into one of the bank accounts opened under the name Christian Bendtner. Stratenco told victims the money would go into an eBay holding account until the merchandize was shipped. Instead, the money went directly into one of the fraudulent accounts. During the course of the scheme, the defendant transferred $17,500 of the money wired into the fraudulent accounts to an individual located in the Ukraine. As a result of Stratenco’s actions, individuals wired $49,300 to the fraudulent bank accounts.
The sentencing is the result of an investigation on the part of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations under the direction of James C. Spero, Special Agent in Charge.