Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and James Smith, the Assistant Director in Charge of the New York Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), announced the arrest of DONALD DILLION on wire fraud and money laundering charges arising out of a scheme to defraud victims by convincing them that they had won prizes in a sweepstakes sponsored by a well-known marketing and sweepstakes company (the “Sweepstakes Company”). DILLION was arrested on February 3, 2024, at John F. Kennedy International Airport while attempting to enter the United States from Jamaica. DILLION was presented before U.S. Magistrate Judge Barbara Moses yesterday.
U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “As alleged in the Complaint, Donald Dillion defrauded numerous victims, who were lured into thinking that they had won life-changing prizes in a well-known sweepstakes. Through their lies, Dillion and others allegedly convinced these victims that they would only receive their prizes if they first parted with tens of thousands of dollars in supposed taxes and fees. Dillion then allegedly laundered these funds by sending them to a foreign bank. My Office will prosecute these crimes to the fullest to demonstrate that fraud schemes like Dillion’s simply do not pay.”
FBI Assistant Director in Charge James Smith said: “Winning a significant amount of cash or a luxury car through a sweepstakes often represents a dream to many Americans. Donald Dillion turned his victims’ dream into a nightmare when he allegedly stole tens of thousands of dollars through his fraudulent scheme. The FBI will continue to investigate and bring to justice anyone attempting defraud innocent people.”
According to the allegations in the Complaint:
At least in or about 2021, DILLION, working with others, perpetrated a scheme in which victims were contacted by individuals claiming to work for the Sweepstakes Company, who convinced the victims that they had won a large cash prize and a luxury car as part of the Sweepstakes Company’s sweepstakes. The perpetrators of the scheme told the victims that their prizes would be released to them upon the Sweepstakes Company’s receipt of, among other things, the taxes and fees purportedly owed on the prizes. In this way, numerous victims were induced to wire tens of thousands of dollars to bank accounts held in the name of DD Metro Solutions LLC (“DD Metro”) and controlled by DILLION. DILLION wired a significant proportion of these victim funds to a Chinese bank, including memoranda with some of these wires suggesting no connection to the Sweepstakes Company. None of the victims received the cash prizes or luxury cars promised to them.
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DILLION, 57, of the Bronx, New York, has been charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison; wire fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison; and conspiracy to commit money laundering, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
The maximum potential sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by a judge.
Mr. Williams praised the outstanding investigative work of the FBI.
The prosecution of this case is being handled by the Office’s Illicit Finance and Money Laundering Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Benjamin A. Gianforti and Jennifer Ong are in charge of the prosecution.
The charges in the Complaint are merely accusations, and DILLION is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
 As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the text of the Complaint and the description of the Complaint set forth herein constitute only allegations, and every fact described should be treated as an allegation.