A Newark man admitted that he laundered $23 million for a Dominican drug network while awaiting trial for doing it before.
Edwin Deleon-Batista, 37, told a federal judge in Newark that he collected huge amounts of cash from drug sales in New Jersey, New York, and Florida and converted them to cashier’s checks at local banks.
Deleon-Batista was free on bond for federal money laundering charges following his arrest in New York in April 2019, Acting U.S. Attorney for New Jersey Rachel A. Honig said.
Soon after, he “began using a stolen identity and obtained a fraudulent Florida driver’s license to continue the money laundering scheme,” she said.
Deleon-Batista opened several bank accounts in three states where he temporarily dumped the money over a five-month period, Honig said.
Rather than go to trial, Deleon-Batista took a deal form the government, pleading guilty last week to money laundering conspiracy via video conference with U.S. District Judge Katharine S. Hayden in Newark.
The judge scheduled sentencing for June 22.
Honig credited special agents and task force officers of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Jersey and New York divisions, as well as special agents and task force officers of IRS - Criminal Investigation and Morristown police with the investigation leading to the plea, secured by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan M. Peck of her Criminal Division in Newark.
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