seward woman indicted by federal grand jury for violating bank secrecy act
Anchorage, Alaska – A woman was indicted by a federal grand jury in Anchorage for structuring financial transactions for the purpose of evading the currency transaction reporting (CTR) requirements of the Bank Secrecy Act.
United States Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced that Jennifer Ann Shanholtzer, 37, of Seward, Alaska, was charged in a one-count indictment to have made 13 currency deposits totaling $83,000 to her bank account between July and November 2009.
In 1970, Congress enacted the Bank Secrecy Act, which requires that domestic financial institutions report to the Internal Revenue Service any cash transactions exceeding $10,000. Underlying this legislation was Congress's recognition of the importance of reports of large and unusual currency transactions in ferreting out criminal activity.
No criminal involvement as to the source of cash in excess of $10,000 is required to prosecute those who failed to comply with the specified reporting requirements. Although a criminal origin, or purpose, of structured funds is not required, it may be evidence of a person’s knowledge and intent.
A person structures a transaction if that person, acting alone, or in conjunction with, or on behalf of, other persons, conducts or attempts to conduct one or more transactions in currency, in any amount, at one or more financial institutions, on one or more days, in any manner, for the purpose of evading the reporting requirements.
Because Shanholtzer is charged with structuring in connection with the criminal offense of tax evasion, she is subject to enhanced maximum penalties of ten years’ imprisonment and a $250,000 fine. The government also seeks to forfeit $83,000 and a vehicle allegedly used to facilitate the offense.
The case was investigated by special agents of Homeland Security Investigations.
An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.