On Oct. 2, 2014, in New Orleans, Louisiana, Jabari Ragas, of New Orleans, was sentenced to 42 months in prison and three years of supervised release for money laundering and tax fraud. Ragas was also ordered to pay nearly $1,700,000 in restitution for the money laundering count, and $259,210 for the tax fraud count. According to court documents, Ragas was employed by as a registered broker and investment adviser from 2005 through 2009. Ragas previously pleaded guilty to embezzling nearly $1,400,000 from clients, and failing to pay nearly $260,000 in tax due and owing to the IRS. In early 2006, a client of Ragas indicated that he wished to open a Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) account to allow him to contribute towards retirement. Without authorization, Ragas began moving money from the SEP account into an account controlled by Ragas. Ragas supplied the client with a fraudulent account statement along with a fraudulent balance. After using the interstate wire to embezzle funds from the client’s account, Ragas then committed money laundering by further transferring $20,000 into a different account that he controlled. Additionally, on Oct. 12, 2008, Ragas signed and filed an income tax return for 2007 that did not report approximately $288,000 in income.
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