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Minneapolis man pleads guilty to structuring financial transactions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 10, 2012

St. Louis, MO - The United States Attorney’s Office announced today that Abdi Mahdi Hussein pled guilty to conspiracy to structure overseas financial transactions.

According to court documents, between April 2008, Hussein worked at Qaran Financial Express (QFE), a domestic financial institution in Minnesota. His duties included transferring money from people inside the United States to others overseas. In 2008 and 2009, Hussein and co-defendant Mohamud Yusuf structured and transferred $21,000 to an individual located in Kenya. Hussein and Yusuf structured the transactions by dividing the transfers into small amounts and using false names as the individual who purportedly sent the money. To conceal their involvement in the transactions, Yusuf and Hussein evaded regulatory reporting requirements by dividing the transfer into separate transfers of less than $3,000 each, amounts that were below the threshold which would have required Hussein and QFE to identify Yusuf in its record keeping as the sender of the money.

Hussein appeared before United States District Judge Henry E. Autrey, who set sentencing for April 10, 2012.

He now faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison and/or fines up to $250,000. In determining the actual sentences, a Judge is required to consider the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide recommended sentencing ranges.

Co-defendant Mohamud Yusuf pled guilty in November to international terrorism charges and awaits sentencing later this month. Hussein was not charged with any terrorism offense and was not alleged to have knowingly been involved in terrorism activities with Yusuf or others.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in conjunction with task force agencies. Assistant United States Attorneys Matthew Drake and Howard Marcus are handling the case.

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