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Press Release

Kenyan Citizen Gets 135-Month Prison Term for Advance Fee and Investment Fraud Scheme in Washington D.C.

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia

            WASHINGTON – Paul Maucha, 59, a Kenyan national, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court to 135 months in prison for perpetrating an advance fee and investment scheme that defrauded numerous victims.

           The sentence was announced by U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Nicole M. Argentieri, head of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, and FBI Special Agent in Charge Keri Farley of the Atlanta Field Office.

            In addition to the 135-month prison term, U.S. District Court Judge Carl J. Nichols ordered Maucha to serve three years of supervised release; to pay a $200,000 fine, a $400 special assessment, and restitution and forfeiture both in the amount of $1,901,252. 

            A federal jury convicted Maucha on February 1, 2024, on one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, two counts of wire fraud, and one count of engaging in monetary transactions in criminally derived property.

            “The defendant tricked investors into giving him money with promises of favorable financial opportunities,” said U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves. “But instead of following through with those promises, the defendant pocketed the fees and caused investors to lose millions. This sentence holds the defendant accountable and sends a clear message to anyone considering a similar scam.”

            “Investment fraud scams can be difficult to investigate and prosecute due to the interstate and transnational nature of the criminal activity. But this sentence should serve as a warning that the FBI will persistently investigate these crimes and make sure they are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” said Keri Farley, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta.  “Our success in this case is the result of a team effort, with outstanding assistance from our partners. Moving forward we will continue to pursue the collection of restitution for those harmed by the defendant.”

            According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, Maucha, along with a co-conspirator, engaged in a scheme through a shell company Maucha controlled, American Eagle Services Group Inc. (AESG), to make numerous misrepresentations to victims about AESG, its assets, and its access to money and capital.

            In particular, Maucha—through AESG—promised victims who were seeking loans that AESG would provide them with these loans. The victims were required to first provide AESG with an advanced fee. The company misrepresented the purpose of that fee. AESG told victims falsely that the advance fees could be refunded if AESG did not fund the loan. As proven at trial, however, Maucha and his co-conspirator knew that AESG did not have the capital to make these loans at the time the lending agreements were executed, and refunds to victims could not be assured because Maucha and his co-conspirator were splitting the fees between themselves and spending them. There was no money left to be refunded.

            The FBI’s Atlanta Division investigated the case, with substantial assistance from Homeland Security Investigations.

            Trial Attorneys Tian Huang and Tamara Livshiz of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Christine M. Macey for the District of Columbia prosecuted the case. Former Assistant Chief William E. Johnston of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Joshua S. Rothstein for the District of Columbia previously provided valuable assistance in the investigation.


Updated June 11, 2024

Financial Fraud
Press Release Number: 24-500