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Press Release

Unlicensed Money Transmitter Pleads Guilty To Money Laundering Conspiracy

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

SAN DIEGO – San Diego-based money transmitter Francisco Cuevas pleaded guilty in federal court today to participating in a money laundering conspiracy.

In a hearing before U.S. Magistrate Judge David H. Bartick, Cuevas admitted that he and coconspirators operated an unlicensed money transmitting business, in criminal violation of the Bank Secrecy Act, and conducted nearly $12 million worth of international financial transactions in an attempt to promote their unlicensed money transmitting business.

According to the plea agreement, Cuevas and his coconspirators operated a commercial enterprise willing and able to transfer cash on behalf of third parties without registering the business with the Secretary of the Treasury, as required by Title 31, United States Code, Section 5330. In turn, the defendants’ customers availed themselves of Cuevas’ services, and those of his alleged co-conspirators, to collect cash anywhere throughout the United States, and transmit it anywhere in the world. The defendants obtained commissions for their services, extracting a fee from the millions of dollars transmitted abroad.

The criminal case is assigned to U.S. District Court Judge Roger T. Benitez (14cr2936). Judge Bartick allowed Cuevas to remain on pretrial release, pursuant to the terms of a bond posted by Cuevas. Cuevas is scheduled to be sentenced on September 21, 2015 at 9 a.m. before Judge Benitez.

DEFENDANT   Case Number: 14cr2936
Francisco Cuevas Age: 38  

Money Laundering Conspiracy – Title 18, U.S.C., Section 1956(h)
Maximum penalty:      20 years’ imprisonment, $500,000 fine, and forfeiture


Federal Bureau of Investigation
Drug Enforcement Administration
Internal Revenue Service

Updated July 23, 2015