August 16, 2023
A Burlington County, New Jersey, man admitted today that he illegally laundered the proceeds of a mail fraud scheme, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.
Pablo Estrada, 26, of Florence, New Jersey, pleaded guilty before Chief U.S. District Judge Renée Marie Bumb in Camden federal court to an information charging him with one count of money laundering.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
From August 2020 through January 2023, Estrada received money from victims of various scams, including a lottery scam – an advance fee fraud which begins with victims receiving an unexpected notification that they have won large sums of money in a lottery, but are required to pay various fees and expenses before their winnings can be released to them. Estrada deposited the money into various bank accounts that he maintained for purposes of receiving criminal proceeds. He transferred the funds to other bank accounts, keeping a percentage for himself. Estrada laundered more than $4 million in this manner.
The money laundering charge carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross profits or gross loss, whichever is greatest. Sentencing is scheduled for Dec. 19, 2023.
U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited postal inspectors with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service in Newark, under the direction of Inspector in Charge Christopher A. Nielsen, Philadelphia Division; special agents of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Thomas Mahoney; and special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Tammy Tomlins in Newark, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea. He also thanked the Burlington County Prosecutors Office under the direction of LaChia L. Bradshaw and the Florence Township Police Department under the direction of Brian Boldizar for their assistance.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel A. Friedman of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Criminal Division in Camden.
Defense counsel: Brad V. Shuttleworth Esq., Philadelphia