A news release from the U.S. Attorney's office states that five members of a Sandusky family were all charged in a three-count indictment related to skimming more than $1.8 million in cash from three restaurants the family operates in the Sandusky area.The money was deposited at numerous financial institutions, said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.
Here is additional information from the news release:
Indicted are: Haralambos Gonos, age 52; Andreas Gonos, age 28; Chris Gonos, age 31; Kryiakos Gonos, age 30, and Sofia Skoura, age 52.
In count one – conspiracy to structure financial transactions to evade filing currency transaction reports -- Haralambos Gonos, Andreas Gonos, Chris Gonos, and Kryiakos Gonos are accused of taking large amounts of cash from Dianna’s Deli, Dianna’s and The Depot and making multiple deposits of cash just under the $10,000 threshold, for the purpose of evading the filing of a Currency Transaction Report. The conduct took place between 2007 and 2009, according to the indictment.
Count two charges that Haralambos Gonos and an unindicted co-conspirator conspired to structure financial transactions to evade filing Form 8300 between March 2010 and November 2011. Specifically, Gonos purchased a 2007 Mercedes and 2005 Porsche Cayenne motor vehicles by using combinations of cash and multiple cashier’s checks, according to the indictment.
Count three charges Haralambos Gonos and Sofia Skoura conspiring to engage in bulk cash smuggling in an attempt to transport currency to a place outside the United States on or about January 31, 2013. Specifically, they are accused of attempting to transport more than $14,700 to Greece, where they maintain a residence, according to the indictment.
“These defendants are accused of avoiding bank regulations,” Dettelbach said.
“It is IRS-CI’s responsibility when investigating financial institution fraud to focus on the flow of the money which ultimately leads us to the beneficiaries of this illegal activity,” said Denise Rocawich, Acting Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation.
If convicted, the defendants’ sentences will be determined by the Court after reviewing factors unique to this case, including the defendants’ prior criminal record, if any, the defendants’ role in the offense and the characteristics of the violation. In all cases the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.
The investigating agencies in this case are the Internal Revenue Service, Toledo, Ohio the Department of Homeland Security, Dearborn, Michigan, , ICE Homeland Security Investigations, Detroit, Michigan, and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Detroit, Michigan. The case is being handled by Assistant United States Attorney Joseph R. Wilson.
An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. Defendants are entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.