Federal Grand Jury Indicts San Antonio Man for Wire Fraud, Money Laundering and Tax Evasion
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Texas
In San Antonio today, federal authorities arrested Edward C. Wagner, who faces federal charges for allegedly conducting a fraudulent investment scheme and attempting to evade paying over $1 million in taxes, announced United States Attorney John F. Bash and IRS-Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge Sarah Kull, Houston Field Office.
The indictment charges Wagner, owner and operator of Pharmacogenetics, EcoChem, Leaf 23 and Nutrecs, with eleven counts of wire fraud, two counts of money laundering and six counts of tax evasion. The indictment alleges that from June 2011 to September 2016, Wagner collected approximately $645,000 from company investors under false and fraudulent pretenses and converted it to his own personal use. The indictment also alleges that from 2007 to 2016, Wagner willfully attempted to evade paying income tax due to the United States for those calendar years. From 2007 through 2010, Wagner accrued a total of $744,186 in unpaid taxes and penalties based on taxable income of $1,410,112. The indictment further alleges that Wagner intentionally disguised his actual income by hiding his sources of income, using nominee financial institution accounts, dealing extensively in cash and cashier’s checks, and creating a false loan document. The indictment further alleges that Wagner has failed to file an income tax return for calendar years 2013 through 2016.
“Our capitalist system works only when our legal rules against fraud are vigorously enforced. That is why DOJ relentlessly pursues those who defraud investors,” stated U.S. Attorney Bash.
“Wagner is charged with exploiting his investors’ trust by using those monies meant for his businesses for his own personal gain. In this case, IRS-Criminal Investigation is not only enforcing the nation's tax laws, but also holding an individual accountable for violating the trust of his investors,” said IRS-Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge Kull.
Each wire fraud charge calls for up to 20 years in federal prison upon conviction. Each money laundering charge calls for up to ten years in federal prison upon conviction. And, each tax evasion charge calls for up to five years in federal prison upon conviction.
Agents with the IRS—Criminal Investigation conducted this investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney William R. Harris is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
An indictment is merely a charge and should not be considered as evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Updated March 22, 2019