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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ANGELA DODGE

Dec. 12, 2012

PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICER
(713) 567-9388

Romanian Man Indicted for Wire Fraud

VICTORIA, Texas - A federal grand jury has issued a multi-count indictment against a Romanian National as part of an Internet fraud scheme, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. The indictment charges Doru Gabriel Trifu, 27, a Romanian non-immigrant residing in Orangevale, Calif., on a visa, for seven counts of wire fraud. 

Trifu was allegedly part of a fraudulent scheme in which consumer items were listed for sale over the Internet. Individuals attempted  to purchase items and were instructed to send purchase money via MoneyGram to an escrow agent who would accept the funds, complete the transaction and deliver the item. However, according to the indictment, after the buyer electronically transferred the money through MoneyGram, the item was never delivered.

The indictment alleges that between March 2011 and February 2012, Trifu used a counterfeit United States passport to collect money in approximately 230 fraudulent transactions valued at more than $567,000 across Texas, Mississippi and Alabama. 
 
Trifu has been in federal custody since his November arrest in California. A trial date will be set early next year before Senior United States District Judge John Rainey.

Each count carries a maximum penalty of not more than 20 years of imprisonment and a possible $250,000 fine upon conviction.

The charges stem from an investigation by Homeland Security Investigations. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lance Watt.

An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.