Colombian Businessman Charged with Money Laundering Extradited to the United States from Cabo Verde

  

U.S. Department of Justice


Alex Nain Saab Moran (Saab), 49, a Colombian citizen, will make his initial appearance in federal court in Miami, Florida, today after being extradited from the Republic of Cabo Verde. Saab is charged in an indictment with laundering the proceeds of violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) in connection with a scheme to pay bribes to take advantage of Venezuela’s government-controlled exchange rate. He is expected to make his initial court appearance today at 1:00 p.m. before U.S. Magistrate Judge John J. O’Sullivan of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

Specifically, on July 25, 2019, Saab was charged along with Alvaro Pulido Vargas, aka German Enrique Rubio Salas, 55, also a Colombian citizen, in an eight-count indictment with one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering and seven counts of money laundering. The indictment alleges that beginning in or around November 2011 and continuing until at least September 2015, Saab and Pulido conspired with others to launder the proceeds of an illegal bribery scheme from bank accounts located in Venezuela to and through bank accounts located in the United States. According to the indictment, Saab and Pulido obtained a contract with the Venezuelan government in November 2011 to build low-income housing units. The defendants and their co-conspirators then took advantage of Venezuela’s government-controlled exchange rate, under which U.S. dollars could be obtained at a favorable rate, by submitting false and fraudulent import documents for goods and materials that were never imported into Venezuela and bribing Venezuelan government officials to approve those documents. The indictment alleges that the unlawful activity was a bribery scheme that violated the FCPA and involved bribery offenses against Venezuela. It also alleges that meetings in furtherance of the bribe payments occurred in Miami and that Saab and Pulido wired money related to the scheme to bank accounts in the Southern District of Florida. As a result of the scheme, Saab and Pulido transferred approximately $350 million out of Venezuela, through the United States, to overseas accounts they owned or controlled. 

On June 12, 2020, Saab was detained in the Republic of Cabo Verde, an archipelago nation west of continental Africa, at the request of the United States. The United States thereafter submitted a formal extradition request, which Saab opposed. On March 16, the Cabo Verdean Supreme Court approved the extradition of Saab. After further litigation concerning Saab’s detention and extradition between Saab’s lawyers and the Cabo Verdean Attorney General’s Office, on Aug. 30, the Constitutional Court of Cabo Verde dismissed his appeal; and on Oct. 13, it denied the last reconsideration request by Saab and certified the completion of the proceedings concerning the extradition of Saab to the United States. The Minister of Justice of Cabo Verde then ordered his surrender, consistent with the court orders, resulting in Saab’s arrival in the United States on Oct. 16. 

Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Acting U.S. Attorney Juan Antonio Gonzalez for the Southern District of Florida, and Acting Special Agent in Charge La Verne J. Hibbert of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Miami Field Office made the announcement. 

Assistant Attorney General Polite and Acting U.S. Attorney Gonzalez commended and thanked the Government of the Republic of Cabo Verde for their assistance in the extradition of Saab to the United States. The Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs provided substantial assistance in securing Saab’s arrest and extradition, as did INTERPOL Washington.

This case was investigated by DEA Miami with assistance from the FBI’s Miami Field Office and Homeland Security Investigation’s Miami Field Office. FBI’s International Operations Division transported Saab from Cabo Verde to the United States.

Trial Attorney Alexander Kramer of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Kurt K. Lunkenheimer of the Southern District of Florida are prosecuting the case.

An indictment is merely an allegation, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of U.S. Department of Justice.

Send us your press releases to pressrelease.zawya@refinitiv.com


© Press Release 2021

Disclaimer: The contents of this press release was provided from an external third party provider. This website is not responsible for, and does not control, such external content. This content is provided on an “as is” and “as available” basis and has not been edited in any way. Neither this website nor our affiliates guarantee the accuracy of or endorse the views or opinions expressed in this press release.

The press release is provided for informational purposes only. The content does not provide tax, legal or investment advice or opinion regarding the suitability, value or profitability of any particular security, portfolio or investment strategy. Neither this website nor our affiliates shall be liable for any errors or inaccuracies in the content, or for any actions taken by you in reliance thereon. You expressly agree that your use of the information within this article is at your sole risk.

To the fullest extent permitted by applicable law, this website, its parent company, its subsidiaries, its affiliates and the respective shareholders, directors, officers, employees, agents, advertisers, content providers and licensors will not be liable (jointly or severally) to you for any direct, indirect, consequential, special, incidental, punitive or exemplary damages, including without limitation, lost profits, lost savings and lost revenues, whether in negligence, tort, contract or any other theory of liability, even if the parties have been advised of the possibility or could have foreseen any such damages.


More From Press Releases