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Two Indicted In East Texas Cryptocurrency Money Laundering Scheme

TYLER, Texas –A 75-year-old woman and a 33-year-old man have been indicted for their roles in a cryptocurrency money laundering scheme in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney Brit Featherston.

Lois Boyd of Amelia Court House, VA, and Manik Mehtani, of McLean, VA, was named in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury, charging them with a violation of the Travel Act, money laundering, and money laundering conspiracy.

According to the indictment, Boyd and Mehtani allegedly have conspired with others to receive victim money derived from various fraud schemes and launder the proceeds through cryptocurrency. The defendants allegedly routinely structured deposits to avoid transaction reporting requirements and conceal the nature and source of the criminal proceeds. They exchanged the criminal proceeds for cryptocurrency and directed the cryptocurrency to wallets. The wallets were under the control of their foreign co-conspirators. In August 2020, the defendants traveled to Longview to exchange more than $450,000 for Bitcoin. Authorities temporarily detained them and seized the money. In their operation, Boyd, Mehtani, and their co-conspirators allegedly laundered more than $750,000.00.

If convicted, Boyd and Mehtani face up to 20 years in federal prison. A grand jury indictment is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. You can find additional information about the OCDETF Program at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

The U.S. Secret Service and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service investigated the case and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Nathaniel C. Kummerfeld and L. Frank Coan, Jr. prosecuted it.