A national moving scheme ended up with 12 sentences for conspiracy for the two leaders, Seghei Verlan, 39, and Andrey Shuklin, 34, and their 10 partners in crime. U.S. District Court in Cincinnati, Ohio sentenced Verlan, who is a Miami, FL resident to 72 months in prison on December 20, 2022.
Verlan was charged with racketeering conspiracy. He pleaded guilty in August 2022. The second leader of the gang, Andrey Shuklin, 34, from Miami, FL, was sentenced to 78 months in prison on May 2022. He pleaded guilty in January 2021.
This gang defrauded more than 1000 people for $2.5 million. They were operating for more than 5 years nationwide. The scam was discovered by WMAR-2 News Mallory Sofastaii. In 2017, they shed light on how fraud is carried out and who is involved in this criminal activity.
All 12 members of the gang were charged with fraud. The defendants Iakovlev, Pestereanu, Nezat, Quincoces, Martin, Kariaka, and Shuklin immediately pleaded guilty. Shulkin was sentenced to 78 months in May 2022, most of which he has already served, and he has a little more than a year and a half left to spend in prison in Miami, Fl. The accused Kalonov negotiated with government officials for a short time regarding the terms of his guilty plea. In December 2022, the whole process ended with Verlan’s sentence of 72 months in prison.
The United States attorney’s Office Southern District of Ohio in its report emphasizes that the fraud was perpetrated through moving companies based in several U.S. states. Those who were victims of this scam lost about $2.5 million. A series of moving companies from Florida, Ohio, Maryland, North Carolina, Illinois, Texas, California, Connecticut, Colorado, and Missouri served the criminal organization led by Verlan and Shuklin.
This criminal group is accused of extorting money from their companies’ customers. The items that were the subject of the fraud were the property of clients who hired a moving company owned by a criminal group.
The initial offer of those moving companies to future clients was always significantly lower than the others. As clients hire them and things are loaded onto trucks, the price increases. The employees of these companies were ordered to increase the cubic capacity of the cargo. This increase was limited to 20% to make the deceit more believable.
They also paid their employees to write fake positive reviews on their websites. This was with the purpose to deceive future clients to have the false impression that it is a highly-rated company with lots of satisfied clients.
Verlan is responsible for setting up new companies through false statements to federal regulators which enabled further deceit of clients.
The activities of this criminal organization were discovered and they were all charged with fraud in July 2018. This national moving scheme ended up with prison sentences for two leaders of this criminal organization for participation in the racketeering conspiracy.