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Press Release

Niagara Falls Woman Pleads Guilty To Attempting To Evade Reporting Requirements While Purchasing Money Orders

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of New York

CONTACT:      Barbara Burns
PHONE:         (716) 843-5817
FAX:            (716) 551-3051

BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Georgina Fisher, a/k/a Georgina Baratta, 47, of Niagara Falls, NY, pleaded guilty to attempting to cause a financial institution to fail to file a transaction report before U.S. District Judge Richard J. Arcara. The charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys MaryEllen Kresse and Russell T. Ippolito, who are handling the case, stated that on January 28, 2010, the defendant traveled to four Western Union agents in Amherst and Cheektowaga to purchase money orders. At each of the four locations, Fisher purchased less than $3,000 in money orders because she knew that if she purchased $3,000 or more in money orders, she would be required to show identification, and that the Western Union agent would be required to record such identification and other specifics of her money order purchase. The total amount of the money orders purchased on January 28, 2017, was $8,000. In addition, on seven other days between January 29, 2010, and February 6, 2010, Fisher engaged in similar conduct designed to evade the reporting requirements regarding the purchase of money orders in amounts of $3,000 or more. Specifically, on each of these other dates, the defendant traveled to multiple Western Union locations, purchasing less than $3,000 in money orders at each location. The money orders purchased on these dates totaled $66,000.

The plea is the result of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, under the supervision of Special Agent-in-Charge James D. Robnett.

Sentencing is scheduled for April 10, 2018, before Judge Arcara.

Updated December 13, 2017