Sezgin Baran Korkmaz, a Turkish businessman, has been charged with money laundering, wire fraud and obstruction after being extradited from Austria, the Justice Department announced on Friday.
Korkmaz arrived in Utah earlier Friday and was taken into custody by the US Marshals Service. He was indicted in a Salt Lake City court for allegedly laundering more than $133 million via bank accounts he owned in Turkey and Luxembourg, the small country located in northwestern Europe.
Korkmaz is alleged to have participated in an scheme to defraud the US government by filing false claims for clean energy tax credits worth more than $1 billion. Two alleged co-conspirators, Jacob and Isaiah Kingston, have pleaded guilty.
Both men testified at trial against a fourth co-conspirator, Levon Termendzhyan, who was convicted by a federal jury on all counts. All three men are awaiting sentencing.
“The successful apprehension and extradition of Baran Korkmaz demonstrates the department’s commitment to working with our international partners to pursue, capture and return those who seek to defraud the American people,” Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart Goldberg said in a statement.
“Thanks to our law enforcement partners and their counterparts in Austria and Lebanon, we are now able to bring Korkmaz to trial on the pending charges, and have recovered significant forfeiture proceeds,” he added.
Wanted by the US and Türkiye, Korkmaz was arrested on June 19, 2021 in a town 250 kilometers (155 miles) outside the Austrian capital. He was brought to Vienna and then sent back to Wels. There, a local court ruled on July 5, 2021 that he would remain arrested.
Source : Yeni Safak