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DOJ: Miami Duo Laundered $1M in Internet Scams

A Miami duo now faces federal money-laundering charges for allegedly stealing $1 million in a money laundering scam, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Yamel Tamayo, 36, and Yumeydi Govantes, 39, are charged with crimes associated with recruiting a number of people who laundered more than $950,000 generated from email schemes that scammed business into wiring money to criminals.

In a statement to a Miami news outlet, Matthew T. Albence, acting Director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said, “Homeland Security Investigations, together with its law enforcement partners, has proven once again, that cyber-enabled financial fraud will not be tolerated in the United States.”

Court filings show the two had 18 people laundering the funds for an international criminal network using South Florida-based shell companies. Yumeydi Quality Products Inc. in Homestead, FL and YGT Buying Inc. in Miami operated between November 2016 and June 2019, according to records.

Tamayo and Govantes were among 281 people arrested worldwide as a part of “Operation reWired,” a four-month investigation involving a number of foreign and domestic agencies.

Other scams were also targeted in the investigation to include those we have covered before like financial fraud, money transfer, romance scams and rental property schemes.

According to the Internet Crime Complaint Center, Tamayo and Govantes scam has cost nearly $30 billion worldwide between June 2016 and July 2019.

Tamayo and Govantes were arrested in June. They will have a court appearance today. If convicted of their crimes, bot could serve up to 20 years in prison.

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