Florida Woman Indicted in Cryptocurrency Money Laundering Scheme

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FILE PHOTO: American flag waves outside the U.S. Department of Justice Building in Washington

TYLER, Texas – A 37-year-old Florida woman has been indicted in a cryptocurrency money laundering scheme in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney Brit Featherston.

Sharena Seay, of Jacksonville, FL, was named in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury, charging her with money laundering.  She was arraigned in federal court by U.S. Magistrate Judge John D. Love.

]According to the indictment, Seay is alleged to have laundered the proceeds of her drug trafficking operations through cryptocurrency.  The defendant allegedly supplied alpha-Pyrrolidinopentiophenone (alpha-PVP), which is often called “flakka,” and similar synthetic cathinones, such as Eutylone or alpha-PiHP.  Seay distributed alpha-PVP and other controlled substances to various customers across the United States.  Customers who purchased controlled substances from Seay paid for their purchases with cash.  Seay laundered the cash proceeds through cryptocurrency in order to purchase more controlled substances on the dark web and to conceal her criminal activity.

During the course of the conspiracy, Seay allegedly laundered more than $1.2 million.

On August 17, 2022, a federal grand jury in the Eastern District of Texas returned a five-count indictment charging Seay with money laundering and aiding and abetting. 

If convicted, Seay faces up to 20 years in federal prison on each charge.  A grand jury indictment is not evidence of guilt.  A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

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This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

This case is being investigated by the U.S. Secret Service and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Nathaniel C. Kummerfeld.

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