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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of New York

Monday, July 18, 2016

West Seneca Woman Admits Role In Oversses Investment Scam

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

BUFFALO, N.Y.-U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. announced today that Monica R. Romaszko, 62, of West Seneca, NY, pleaded guilty to conspiring to evade the payment of federal income taxes, before U.S. District Judge Elizabeth A. Wolford. The charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Russell T. Ippolito, Jr., who is handling the case, stated that Romaszko conspired with others to funnel funds from an illegal boiler room investment fraud scheme through various bank accounts In Western New York created in the names of fictitious entities.  A “boiler room” in an investment fraud scheme is a location where conspirators use mass marketing techniques to contact prospective investors. During the solicitation, conspirators make false representations about investment opportunities in order to obtain money from unsuspecting investors. The boiler room in this case was located in Barcelona, Spain and was operated by Romaszko’s brother, Arnold Wrobel who was convicted and is awaiting sentencing.

The scam conned investors in the United Kingdom and Canada into buying nearly worthless shares of restricted stock at severely inflated prices by telling buyers that they were buying more valuable regular shares of stock. Approximately 250 investors lost more than $2,900,000. The defendant’s conduct resulted in a loss of $193,439 to the Internal Revenue Service in federal income tax revenue. Romaszko is the fourth of 12 defendants in the case to be convicted.  

The plea is the result of an investigation on the part of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of James S. Spero, Special Agent in Charge, and the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigations Division, under the direction of Shantelle P. Kitchen, Special Agent in Charge.  Sentencing will be scheduled at a later date.

Updated July 19, 2016