LAWFUEL – Law News, Law Jobs Network – R. Alexander Acosta…

LAWFUEL – Law News, Law Jobs Network – R. Alexander Acosta, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Mark R. Trouville, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration, announced today that defendant John A. Garcia, a West Palm Beach attorney, pled guilty to all four counts of a criminal Information filed in Case No. 06-80128-Cr-Hurley. Garcia pled guilty to three counts of illegal structuring of cash deposits to avoid a currency transaction report, in violation of Title 31, United States Code, Section 5324(a)(3), and one count of making a false statement to agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1001. As part of the plea agreement, Garcia agreed to forfeit a total of $75,000 in drug-related proceeds. Sentencing is scheduled for February 16, 2007, at 2:30 p.m.

In pleading guilty to the Information, Garcia admitted that he lied to DEA agents when he said that: (1) he had no financial or equitable interest in the construction of a residence in the name of Joel McDermott located in a real estate development known as “Olympia;” and (2) he did not purchase cashier’s checks from Bank of America for the residence of Joel McDermott. In fact, however, Garcia had a financial and equitable interest in the residence in “Olympia,” which was being constructed in the name of Joel McDermott. In addition, Garcia purchased several cashier’s checks at Bank of America with cash given to him by Joel McDermott. Thereafter, Garcia caused those checks to be tendered to Minto Homes for the benefit of Joel McDermott and a home McDermott was building in “Olympia.”

Mr. Acosta commended the DEA and its Task Force for their investigative efforts, which led to the successful resolution of this case. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Stephen Carlton and John S. Kastrenakes, and Asset Forfeiture Assistant United States Attorney Antonia Barnes.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at . Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at or on .

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