Feds look to seize 4 Miami area homes in $1B Venezuelan money laundering case

The properties include three houses in Coral Gables and one in Miami

TRD MIAMI /
Aug.August 31, 2018 12:30 PM

Clockwise from upper left corner: 597 Hibiscus Lane; 194 Isla Dorada Boulevard; 655 Casuarina Concourse;  6905 Prado Boulevard

The U.S. government is now looking to seize four more high-end South Florida properties that it alleges are tied to the defendants of a $1.2 billion Venezuelan money laundering case.

Federal prosecutors filed a notice of forfeiture in a U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Florida on Wednesday to seize three Coral Gables houses and one house on Hibiscus Lane in Miami’s Bay Point neighborhood.

The government alleges the properties are tied to the defendants of a scheme in which top Venezuelan officials and professional money launderers siphoned $1 billion from the state oil giant, Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A. Some of the money went into South Florida real estate, and federal officials have already sought to seize a luxury condo in the Porsche Design Tower in Sunny Isles Beach as well as two Wellington properties.

Last week, a criminal indictment listed more than a dozen properties as “substitute properties” that the government can seize if necessary. On Wednesday, federal officials filed a notice of lis pendens, which seeks forfeiture of the four properties and makes them nearly impossible to sell.

The properties include:

  • A three-bedroom, three-bathroom house at 597 Hibiscus Lane, Miami. The property lists Olympia De Castro and Gustavo Hernandez Frieri as the co trustees of the 597 Hibiscus Lane Revocable Trust. Prosecutors allege Frieri was a professional money launderer based in Miami.
  • A five-bedroom, four-bathroom house at 194 Isla Dorada Boulevard, Coral Gables. The property is owned by Sky Investment and Field Construction, Corp, which lists its manager as Yngrid Silva of Icon Brickell unit 619 at 465 Brickell Avenue.
  • A five-bedroom, five-bathroom home at 6905 Prado Boulevard, in Coral Gables’ Cocoplum neighborhood. The property was owned by Britestar Worldwide Limited, a Florida company, which lists Fernando Valero and Yngrid Silva as its managers.
  • A six-bedroom, five-bathroom house at 655 Casuarina Concourse in Coral Gables’ Cocoplum neighborhood. It is also owned by Britestar Worldwide Limited.

Shortly after the initial criminal complaint was filed in July, the Miami Herald reported that Venezuela President Nicolás Maduro is being investigated by the U.S. government for his role in the alleged scheme.

One defendant, a former Swiss wealth manager, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering on Aug. 22. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 29 by U.S. District Judge Cecilia M. Altonaga of the Southern District of Florida. As part of his plea, Krull admitted that in his position with the Swiss bank, he attracted private clients, particularly clients from Venezuela, to the bank, according to the Department of Justice.

Krull’s attorney, Oscar Santiago Rodriguez, did not immediately respond for comment.


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Chad Carroll, Matthew Dugow and Liz Hogan with 8750 Ponce de Leon Road (Credit: Douglas Elliman)

JP Morgan managing director buys mansion near Coral Gables

Henry Torres and Merrick Manor

Merrick Manor hires Berkshire EWM to take over sales

From left: Phil Gutman, Camilo Lopez and Herve Barbera, with Ofizzina

Bar Invest Group buys office condos in Coral Gables, plans new HQ

Joseph Menaged with his units at Faena House and One57 (Credit: Facebook, Redfin, StreetEasy)

Father of “Property Wars” star pleads guilty to bank fraud

Georgina Pineda and King David Condominium at 17555 Atlantic Boulevard (Credit: Realtor)

Property manager stole HOA money, then gambled it away: police

Masoud Shojaee and 3650 Bird Road (Credit: Google Maps)

Shoma plans two-tower rental project near Coral Gables

Greystar’s Bob Faith, The Mile (Credit: BuzzBuzzHome)

Greystar sells The Mile apartments for $40M

6855 Sunrise Drive (Credit: Google Maps)

Financier drops $13M for waterfront Coral Gables estate

arrow_forward_ios
Loading...