Man Who Allegedly Attempted to Stab Flight Attendant and Open Airplane Door Mid-Flight Indicted by Grand Jury
BOSTON – A Colombian man has been extradited to the United States from the Republic of Colombia to face charges related to his alleged role in a sophisticated money laundering organization that laundered approximately $1 million in proceeds from drug trafficking through United States banks.
Luis Fernando Galindo Ramos, 55, was arrested in Cali, Colombia on Nov. 9, 2021 and extradited to the United States today. Galindo was detained after appearing in federal court in Boston earlier today. On Aug. 19, 2021, Galindo was indicted by a federal grand jury on money laundering conspiracy, laundering of monetary instruments and engaging in monetary transactions in criminally derived property.
According to the charging documents, in or about August 2016, an investigation began into a sophisticated money laundering organization located primarily in Cali, Colombia. During an extensive five-year investigation, the organization allegedly laundered approximately $1 million in drug proceeds through intermediary banks in the United States, including banks in Massachusetts, by use of the Colombian Black Market Peso Exchange (BMPE).
Galindo allegedly arranged the domestic transfer of substantial amounts of bulk cash within the United States. He maintained the security of those funds during the transfers through the exchange of passcodes. The funds were subsequently integrated into bank accounts located in the United States and held in the names of businesses and individuals in order to repay drug suppliers in Colombia. It is alleged that, by using the BMPE, Galindo conspired to conceal drug trafficking activity and proceeds from law enforcement. Approximately $550,000 in laundered bulk currency was seized during the investigation.
The charges of money laundering conspiracy and laundering of monetary instruments each provide for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, up to three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $500,000, or twice the amount involved, whichever is greater. The crime of engaging in monetary transactions in criminally derived property provides for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, up to three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000, or twice the amount involved. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and statutes which govern the determination of a sentence in a criminal case.
Acting United States Attorney Joshua Levy; Brian D. Boyle, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, New England Field Division; and Joleen D. Simpson, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigation in Boston made the announcement today. The Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs and the Office of the Judicial Attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota provided critical assistance in securing the arrest and extradition of Galindo. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jared C. Dolan and Alathea E. Porter of Levy’s Criminal Division are prosecuting the case.
This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.
The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.