Crime Watch 8

Feds: 2 from Fishers indicted in Texas for laundering stolen money through crypto

A wooden judge gavel and soundboard isolated on white background. (Photo by Oana Malaeru / 500px / Getty Images)

TYLER, Texas (WISH) — According to court documents, 21 people including two people from Fishers were indicted in Texas for their involvement in a scheme to launder stolen money using crypto currencies.

According to a release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office Eastern District of Texas, all 21 people are being charged in a wire and mail fraud conspiracy. Fnu Ankush, 35, of Fishers, and Jenisha Katuwal, 40, of Fishers, were involved in these schemes.  The release says those involved created a financial infrastructure in the United States to establish shell companies with names that were intended to resemble names of real companies.

“These defendants orchestrated highly organized and sophisticated schemes to launder fraud proceeds through cryptocurrency,” said U.S. Attorney Brit Featherston.  “Today’s announcement sends a clear message that money laundering networks that service fraud schemes targeting American victims, especially the elderly, will not be tolerated, and those operating such networks will be held accountable.  By acting as domestic money launderers for foreign co-conspirators, these defendants played indispensable roles that allowed foreign actors to reach from overseas to target victims in communities across the United States.” 

U.S. Attorney Brit Featherston

Those involved in the scheme also opened and controlled business bank accounts in the names of the shell companies to go through with the computer tech scheme, the release states. They created websites for many shell companies to make the companies appear real, and persuaded people to deposit, wire, or transfer funds into the bank accounts and mail funds to certain addresses.

The operation has disrupted more than $300 million in annual money laundering transactions, forfeited millions of dollars in cash and cryptocurrency, and identified thousands of victims, the release states.