A former Wells Fargo employee pleads guilty to money laundering

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    A former Wells Fargo employee pleads guilty to money laundering View of a Wells Fargo branch in New York, New York, USA UU., On January 15, 2016. EFE / File

     San Diego (CA), .- A former employee of the bank Wells Fargo was found guilty Thursday of money laundering that the Prosecutor’s Office filed against him, after accepting that he transferred to Mexico money that was going to give to the Sinaloa Cartel.

    Luis Fernando Figueroa, originally from Tijuana (Mexico), accepted before a federal court in San Diego (California) that he was part of an organization that laundered and transferred money from the United States to Mexico, among other ways through accounts that he opened as personal banker at the bank Wells Fargo.

    According to the Office of the District Attorney of the Southern District of California, between 2014 and 2018, through this operation, about 19.6 million dollars were laundered from the sale of drugs by the Sinaloa Cartel.

    In November 2018, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) arrested Figueroa in an operation that dismantled the organization operating between Tijuana (Mexico) and San Diego (California), and to date has resulted in the arrest of eight people, six of whom have pleaded guilty.

    According to the prosecution’s accusation, the organization recruited people who opened “funnel bank accounts,” that is, accounts used to deposit cash from other branches in other states and through transfers from outside the country.

    In his admission of guilt, Figueroa stated that he was aware that the bank accounts were used by “prestanombres” and would be used to launder money that was going to be sent to Mexico.

    The Office of the Prosecutor indicates that other members of this network used to travel to American cities such as Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, New Jersey and New York to collect thousands of dollars in cash, proceeds from the sale of drugs.

    The money was given to intermediaries in private residences or public spaces, such as commercial stores and parking lots, usually hidden in bags, shoe boxes or carry-ons.

    The intermediaries then deposited into accounts of Wells Fargo and other banking entities in the US amounts ranging between 20,000 and 45,000 dollars, which were then transferred to Mexico to be sent to the Sinaloa Cartel. (EFEUSA)

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