PROVIDENCE, R.I. – A former Massachusetts used car dealer who led a wide-ranging conspiracy to defraud financial institutions in several states, including Rhode Island, out of more than $2.8 million dollars has been sentenced to five years in federal prison, announced United States Attorney Zachary A. Cunha.
Rolando E. Estrella, 35, of Dracut, MA., the former owner of a used car dealership in Lawrence, MA, previously admitted to a federal judge in Providence that he recruited, employed, and directed others to file fraudulent used car loan applications using stolen personal identifying information and fraudulent documents, including falsified car. Once the loans were issued by financial institutions, the proceeds were deposited into bank accounts controlled by members of the conspiracy and the proceeds were then quickly withdrawn in cash.
According to information presented to the court, Estrella and his co-defendants intended to defraud financial institutions of more than $2.8 million.
Estrella pleaded guilty on October 1, 2022, to conspiracy to commit bank fraud, seven counts of bank fraud, and one count of fraudulent use of a Social Security number. He was sentenced today in sixty months in federal prison to be followed by three years of federal supervised release. Estrella was ordered to pay restitution to financial institutions totaling more than $2.8 million.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney G. Michael Seaman.
The investigation into this fraud ring which operated throughout the northeast was conducted by the Social Security Office of Inspector General and the United States Secret Service.