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FEDERAL GRAND JURY INDICTS BOSTON ATTORNEY ON MONEY LAUNDERING CHARGES

April 7, 2011

BOSTON, Mass. - A federal grand jury today indicted a Boston attorney, charging him with money laundering.

ROBERT A. GEORGE, 56, of Westwood, was charged in a seven count indictment with conspiring to launder money, money laundering, and structuring transactions to evade reporting requirements.

It is alleged that from early 2009 to 2011, GEORGE and a co-conspirator conspired to conceal the illicit source of more than $225,000 in drug proceeds. GEORGE allegedly did this by introducing an individual who was cooperating with the government to GEORGE’s co-conspirator, who converted purported drug money into checks made payable to a fictitious undercover company. According to the indictment, the cooperating witness (CW) represented that he had large amounts of cash from drug trafficking to both GEORGE and his co-conspirator and, on two separate occasions, the co-conspirator took cash in exchange for a check he made payable to a fictitious undercover company. It is alleged that for this service, the CW was charged a substantial fee.

On another occasion, it is alleged that after GEORGE offered a fee to the CW for referring GEORGE clients, GEORGE took $25,000 in cash from an undercover agent posing as a drug dealer client, and made two separate deposits of that cash, at two different branches of his bank, in amounts under $10,000, in order to avoid a reporting requirement. GEORGE allegedly thereafter paid the CW a referral fee in the form of a check made payable to a fictitious undercover company. According to the indictment, GEORGE wrote in the memo line of the check that it was for “office disposal.” It is alleged that in all of these transactions, GEORGE helped conceal the fact that the cash was what he understood to be proceeds of illegal drug trafficking.

If convicted on each of the money laundering charges, GEORGE faces up to 20 years imprisonment, to be followed by three years of supervised release and a $500,000 fine. If convicted of the structuring count, GEORGE faces up to five years imprisonment, to be followed by three years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine.

United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Steven Derr, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration - Boston Field Division; and William Offord, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigation - Boston Field Office made the announcement today. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Laura J. Kaplan and James D. Herbert of Ortiz’s Strike Force Unit.

The details contained in the indictment are allegations. The defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

 

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