Virginia Man Indicted On Wire Fraud Charges
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Pennsylvania
HARRISBURG - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that on October 7, 2020, Rishi Budhadev, age 25, of Fredericksburg, Virginia, was indicted by a federal grand jury on wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud charges. The case was unsealed following Budhadev’s arrest on December 1, 2020.
According to United States Attorney David J. Freed, the indictment alleges that between October 2015 and December 2015, Budhadev, working with other unnamed co-conspirators, defrauded victims using common advance-fee mass marketing scams. Budhadev’s victims included a 72-year-old widow from the Middle District of Pennsylvania. The indictment also alleges that this victim sent a MoneyGram money transfer to Budhadev after an individual impersonating a U.S. Government agent told her that she needed to pay money to redeem benefits to which she was entitled because of her late husband’s military service.
The indictment also alleges that Budhadev received approximately 500 MoneyGram money orders worth over $500,000, including about 300 MoneyGram money orders worth over $407,000 from more than 250 senders that he picked up from seven different Walmart stores. On November 13, 2015, Budhadev picked up 13 MoneyGram money transfers totaling approximately $27,000 from five different Richmond, Virginia area Walmart stores. Similarly, on December 4, 2015, Budhadev picked up 38 MoneyGram money transfers totaling approximately $34,000 from five different Richmond, Virginia area Walmart stores.
The case was investigated by the United States Postal Inspection Service. Assistant U.S. Attorney Ravi Romel Sharma is prosecuting the case.
Indictments are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.
A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.
The maximum penalty under federal law for wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud is 20 years’ imprisonment. These charges may also carry a fine and a term of supervised release following imprisonment. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant's educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.
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Updated December 8, 2020