Davie Couple Convicted in Multi-Million Dollar Drug Money Laundering and Mortgage Fraud Conspiracy
Jeffrey H. Sloman, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, announced that a federal jury in Miami found defendants Garry Souffrant, 33, and Yvonne Souffrant, 33, husband and wife, both of Davie, FL, guilty of charges relating to their participation in a multi-million dollar money laundering and mortgage fraud conspiracy. A third defendant, Gamaliel Souffrant, a/k/a Neal Souffrant, 44, Garry Souffrant’s brother, of Pembroke Pines, FL, was found not guilty.
The jury convicted Garry Souffrant on 46 counts, including conspiracy; conspiracy to commit drug money laundering; mail fraud; making false statements to mortgage lenders; bank fraud; bank theft; and receipt of stolen bank funds. Co-defendant Yvonne Souffrant was convicted of conspiracy, and making a false statement to mortgage lenders.
According to the Indictment and evidence presented during the trial, from 2002 to 2008, defendants Garry and Yvonne Souffrant used their family business, called Progressive Real Estate of Broward, Inc., to launder millions of dollars in drug proceeds through an extensive mortgage fraud scheme. The defendants assisted drug traffickers in purchasing homes and luxury automobiles, including a 2004 Rolls Royce Phantom. To execute the scheme, the defendants arranged for and/or acted as straw buyers on behalf of the drug traffickers. This allowed the traffickers to use their drug proceeds to purchase homes and lease automobiles, while concealing the source of the income. The defendants also diverted several million dollars of mortgage loan proceeds to continue to fund the scheme and for their personal use.
Sentencing has been scheduled for February 2, 2010 at 9:00 a.m. before the U.S. District Court Judge Paul C. Huck.
At sentencing, Garry Souffrant faces the following potential maximum penalties: 5 years for conspiracy (18 U.S.C §371); 20 years for money laundering conspiracy (18 U.S.C. §1956); 20 years for mail fraud (18 U.S.C. §1341);10 years for receipt of stolen bank funds (18 U.S.C. §2113( c)); 30 years for making false statements to mortgage lenders (18 U.S.C. §1014); 30 years for bank fraud (18 U.S.C. §1344); and 10 years for bank theft (18 U.S.C. §2113(b)).
Yvonne Souffrant faces the following potential maximum penalties: 5 years for conspiracy (18 U.S.C §371); and 30 years for making a false statement to mortgage lenders (18 U.S.C. §1014).
Mr. Sloman commended the investigative efforts of the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the City of Miami Police Department, and the Miami-Dade County Police Department. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael Patrick Sullivan, Todd W. Mestepey, and Kelly Karase.
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