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Press Release

Eleven Defendants Charged In International Conspiracy To Smuggle Chemicals And Money Laundering

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

TULSA, Okla. — United States Attorney Danny C. Williams Sr. announced today the unsealing of a four count superseding indictment charging 11 defendants with conspiracy to defraud the United States and smuggle chemicals from China, substantive smuggling charges, and a money laundering conspiracy. A sealed superseding indictment was filed on June 9, 2014.

According to the superseding indictment, beginning in April of 2011, the defendants conspired to defraud the United States through deceit and dishonest means to smuggle chemicals with fraudulent documents and to sell and transport the chemicals after the chemicals had been smuggled into the United States.

The conspirators ordered chemicals from China and created fraudulent invoices and air waybills used to smuggle and transport the chemicals to residences, businesses, and other locations in Oklahoma, Nevada, Louisiana, California, and New Jersey.

Today, the Tulsa Offices of the United States Immigration Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations, the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations and the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office coordinated a nationwide takedown with arrests and search warrants in the following locations:

  • Tulsa:                                     2 arrest warrants
  • Baton Rouge:                      3 search warrants and 2 arrest warrants
  • Las Cruces:                           1 arrest warrant
  • Las Vegas:                             1 arrest warrant
  • New Orleans:                       1 arrest warrant
  • Huntington Beach, CA:   1 arrest warrant
  • Santa Ana, CA:                    1 arrest warrant
  • Houston:                                1 seizure warrant

The following defendants have been arrested: 

  • Ban Lam and Huong Thi Dao, in Tulsa, Oklahoma
  • Tim Minh Tran and Ariel Dunn, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • Denis Langevin, in Las Cruces, New Mexico
  • Jason Eric Johnson, in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Liem Thanh Vu, in New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Minh Thang Pham, in Huntington Beach, California
  • Duc Huy Vu, in Santa Ana, California

Assistant United States Attorneys Janet Reincke, Catherine Depew, and Gary L. Davis II, are prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.

An indictment is one method of charging a defendant with alleged violations of Federal Law, which must be proven in a court of law beyond a reasonable doubt to overcome a defendants’ presumption of innocence.

U.S. v. Tran et al.

Updated July 14, 2015