Romanian Woman Sentenced To 33 Months In Federal Prison For Committing Wire Fraud
Orlando, Florida - U.S. District Judge Roy B. Dalton, Jr. sentenced Miruna Eugenia Lixandru (33, Ramnicu Valcea, Romania) yesterday to 33 months in federal prison for conspiracy to commit wire fraud. As part of her sentence, Lixandru was ordered to serve a 3-year term of supervised release, upon her release from prison, and to pay restitution to the victims. The court also ordered Lixandru to forfeit approximately $125,000, which were traceable proceeds of the offense. Lixandru pleaded guilty on July 20, 2012.
According to court documents, between December 2011 and January 2012, in Orange County, Lixandru and her co-conspirator’s used an Internet website, which appeared to sell used automobiles, to lure their victims into wiring cash for purchases of items that did not exist. The conspirators instructed the victims to wire the cash through Western Union or Money Gram, to different locations throughout Orange County. Lixandru, using several aliases and counterfeit identifications, including a forged United States passport, collected the monies and then wired the cash out of the country to her co-conspirators. None of the fifty victims ever received their goods. However, Lixandru and her co-conspirators received more than $125,000 in cash from their victims.
On January 12, 2012, Lixandru was arrested after she attempted to flee an Orlando supermarket while fraudulently trying to wire money to Romania through Western Union. In connection with Lixandru’s arrest, authorities found a Romanian passport, $21,497.00 in United States currency, four mobile phones, various wire money transmission receipts, fraudulent licenses, a forged United States passport, document-making implements, and notebooks containing records of her criminal activity.
This case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. It was prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Myrna Amelia Mesa.