Press Release

For Immediate Release
October 10, 2008

Washington D.C.
FBI National Press Office
(202) 324-3691

FBI's Top Ten News Stories for the Week Ending October 10, 2008

1. Washington, D.C.: Colombian Nationals Arraigned on Terrorism and Drug Charges

Jose Maria Corredor-Ibague and Carolina Yanave-Rojas, both Colombian citizens, were extradited from the Republic of Colombia and arraigned in federal court in Washington, D.C., on terrorism and drug charges related to their alleged involvement with the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC), a designated foreign terrorist organization in Colombia. Full story

2. Houston: Five Indicted in $17 Million Mortgage Fraud Scheme

Five individuals were charged in a 12-count indictment with devising a scheme to defraud residential mortgage lenders by misstating facts relevant to the lending decisions.  Anthony Wayne Hawkins, Brandon Alonzo Crenshaw, Nehemiah Jamal Douglas, Babette Jammer, and David Vasser are alleged to have engaged in a mail and wire fraud conspiracy that resulted in the defendants and their co-conspirators fraudulently obtaining more than $17 million in loan proceeds. Full story

3. Knoxville: Man Indicted for Alleged Hack of Alaska Gov. Palinís E-mail Account

David C. Kernell was indicted by a federal grand jury for intentionally accessing without authorization the e-mail account of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.  Kernell turned himself into federal authorities for arrest. Full story

4. Philadelphia: Leader of Asylum Fraud Conspiracy Pleads Guilty

David Lynn admitted to leading an asylum fraud scheme that netted him millions of dollars in illegal profits. Lynn pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy, one count of visa/asylum fraud, one count of money laundering, and conspiracy to commit money laundering. The business that Lynn ran is alleged to have filed at least 380 bogus asylum applications, charging an average of $8,000 for an application. Full story

5. Washington, D.C.: Company Pays U.S. $30 Million for Selling Defective Bullet-Proof Vests

Armor Holdings Products LLC has agreed to pay the United States $30 million to resolve allegations that it violated the False Claims Act by knowingly manufacturing and selling defective Zylon bullet-proof vests. The company allegedly manufactured and sold Zylon bullet-proof vests despite possessing information showing that the Zylon materials degraded quickly over time and were not suitable for ballistic use. The Armor Holdings vests were purchased by the federal government, and by various state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies that were partially reimbursed by the United States under the Justice Department's Bulletproof Vest Partnership program. Full story

6. FBI Headquarters: FBI Surpasses 100,000 Subscriptions to E-Mail Alerts

An FBI service that sends out e-mail alerts when breaking news and information is posted on its national and local Internet websites recently reached two key milestones: more than 100,000 subscribers and more than 75 million total e-mails sent. Full story

7. Baltimore: Niece of Leader in D.C. Property Tax Scheme Pleads Guilty

Jayrece Turnbull pleaded guilty to receipt of stolen property, conspiracy to commit money laundering, tax evasion, and mail fraud in connection with a property tax refund scheme in which over $48 million were stolen from the District of Columbia Office of Tax and Revenue. As part of her plea agreement, Turnbull agreed to a money judgment in an amount to be determined by the court and, in order to satisfy such money judgment, to forfeit three residences, a Mercedes Benz, designer handbags, fur hats, shoes, china, three plasma televisions, jewelry, and monies held in 26 bank accounts. Full story

8. Washington, D.C.: Former DoD Contractor Pleads Guilty in $39.6 Million Scheme to Steal Fuel from U.S. Army in Iraq

Lee William Dubois, a former Department of Defense (DoD) contractor, pleaded to participating in a scheme to steal fuel worth approximately $39.6 million from the U.S. Army in Iraq.  According to information contained in plea documents, Dubois and his co-conspirators used fraudulently-obtained documents to enter the Victory Bulk Fuel Point (VBFP) in Camp Liberty, Iraq, and presented false fuel authorization forms to steal aviation and diesel fuel from the VBFP for subsequent sale on the black market. Full story

9. Minneapolis: Romanian National Pleads Guilty to Possessing Unauthorized Credit Card Numbers and Identity Theft

Sergiu Daniel Popa, a Romanian national, pleaded guilty to aggravated identity theft and possessing unauthorized credit card numbers in connection with an Internet “phishing” scheme to collect personal information of individuals and sell it. Popa was extradited to the U.S. from Spain in June. Full story

10. Washington, D.C.: Loan Broker Charged in $15 Million Scheme to Defraud the Export-Import Bank

Bettina Balderrama, a loan broker from the Philippines, was charged in connection with a $15 million scheme to defraud the Export-Import Bank of the United States. The indictment charges that Balderrama brokered approximately $15 million worth of fraudulent loan transactions between companies located in the Philippines and U.S. lending banks, in which the Bank acted as guarantor or insurer. This case is part of a broader investigation into an $80 million scheme to defraud the Export-Import Bank in which eight individuals have pleaded guilty or been convicted at trial. Four others have been indicted for their alleged involvement in the scheme. Full story

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