Latvian Couple Sentenced For Wire Fraud Conspiracy
CONTACT: Barbara Burns
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BUFFALO, N.Y. – U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that Janis Tonis, 32, and Veronika Krutova, 26, of Latvia, who were convicted of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, were sentenced to time served (seven months) by Senior U.S. District Judge William M. Skretny.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth R. Moellering, who handled the case, stated that the defendants, along with other co-conspirators, defrauded financial institutions and victim businesses by sending false wire transfer requests. Participants in the scheme used stationary from victim businesses to authorize wire transfer requests at the financial institutions. The defendants attempted to defraud a total of $80, 928 from the financial institutions.
The defendants also defrauded online purchasers of motor vehicles by posting cars for sale online, the defendants instructed the buyers to send money to bank accounts they controlled and then took the money and disappeared without ever delivering a vehicle. The loss amounts total $32,300.
The sentencings are the culmination of an investigation on the part of Special Agents of Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge J. Michael Kennedy.