Miami Man Sentenced to 144 Months in Prison for Role in Multimillion-Dollar Scheme to Defraud Commercial Lenders and U.S. Export-Import Bank
A Miami man was sentenced today to 12 years in prison for his role in a scheme to defraud two commercial lenders and the Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM Bank) out of more than $11 million.
Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer of the Southern District of Florida and Inspector General Michael McCarthy of EXIM Bank made the announcement.
Guillermo A. Sanchez-Badia, 61, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Joan A. Lenard of the Southern District of Florida, who also sentenced Sanchez-Badia to three years of supervised release and ordered him to forfeit $41,924,418 and pay $11,503,068 in restitution, joint with co-conspirators Isabel C. Sanchez and Gustavo Girol. Sanchez-Badia pleaded guilty on March 21, 2016, to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, one count of wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.
Sanchez-Badia admitted that from 2007 through 2012, he and his co-conspirators utilized companies that they controlled to create fictitious invoices for sales of merchandise that never occurred. These invoices were sold to two Miami-area commercial lenders in a process called “factoring,” which allowed the conspirators to receive cash for approximately 90 percent of the value of the merchandise listed on the fake invoices. Sanchez-Badia admitted that, in order to continue the scheme, he and his co-conspirators created additional fictitious invoices, transferred the funds they received through numerous bank accounts under their control and, in a Ponzi-style scheme, used a portion of the new proceeds to pay off prior factored invoices.
Sanchez-Badia admitted that when the Miami lenders refused to extend further credit, he and his co-conspirators created false invoices and shipping documents to obtain a loan guaranteed by the EXIM. Rather than acquiring, selling and shipping American manufactured goods as required for an EXIM guaranteed loan, Sanchez-Badia and his co-conspirators used the loan proceeds to pay off earlier factored invoices, thereby extending the scheme, and kept the balance of the loan proceeds for themselves, he admitted. The factoring loans and the EXIM-guaranteed loan ultimately defaulted, causing losses of more than $9 million to the lenders and $2 million to the United States.
Five other individuals have been convicted for their roles in this scheme: Sanchez, 36, and Giral, 38, both of Miami, who await sentencing; and Freddy Moreno-Beltran, 43, of Bogota, Colombia. Ricardo Beato, 62, of Miami, and Jorge Amad, 48, of Miramar, Florida, were separately charged, pleaded guilty and have been sentenced for their roles in the scheme.
The EXIM Office of Inspector General investigated the case. Trial Attorney William Bowne and Senior Litigation Counsel Patrick Donley of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section prosecuted the case.