Miami, Florida – Today, a South Florida federal district judge sentenced three men from different parts of the country to federal prison terms for their roles in a conspiracy to defraud companies by issuing worthless bonds to insure large-scale construction projects. A fourth defendant was sentenced earlier this year.
On December 2, Alexander Robert Xavier, 57, formerly of Boca Raton, Florida was sentenced to 72 months in prison; Timothy Castracane a/k/a “Guy” Castracane, 51, of Saratoga Springs, New York, was sentenced to 46 months in prison; and Henry John Hattendorf, 73, of Las Vegas, Nevada was sentenced to 24 months in prison. On November 16, Robert Michael Wann, 64, of Rancho Mirage, California, was sentenced to 54 months in prison. Each defendant was also sentenced to a term of supervised release of three years and ordered to pay over $2.6 million in restitution to victims of the fraud.
From approximately March 2015 through December 2015, the defendants devised a scheme to unlawfully enrich themselves by issuing various performance and payment bonds – a type of insurance required on major construction contracts. During the course of the fraud, Defendant Xavier, acting as a so-called “individual surety,” pledged over $30 million in assets to builders working on large-scale infrastructure and residential construction projects. In truth, and as the defendants well knew, there were no such assets; only worthless securities that the defendants referred to as “gold certificates.”
Juan Antonio Gonzalez, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida; Sean Earle, Special Agent in Charge, Eastern Region Field Office, United States Environmental Protection Agency, Office of the Inspector General (EPA-OIG); and David Spilker, Special Agent in Charge, Southeast Field Office, United States Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Inspector General (VA-OIG), made the announcement.
United States District Judge Donald M. Middlebrooks imposed the sentences. Previously, the defendants all pled guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1349.
At the time of his sentencing, Defendant Xavier was already serving a 150-month prison sentence imposed in a different Southern District of Florida criminal fraud case, Case No. 15-80149-cr-Marra.
EPA-OIG and VA-OIG investigated the case, with assistance from the United States Department of Transportation OIG, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division, in Albany, New York, and The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey OIG.
It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Christopher B. Browne and Stephanie Hauser. Annika Miranda handled the asset forfeiture component of the case.
Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or at http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov, under case no. 20-cr-80054.
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