South Florida Accountant for an International Company That Operated Sexual “Child Modeling” Websites Pleads Guilty | USAO-MDFL

Tampa, Florida – US Attorney Roger B. Handberg announces that Tatiana Power (41, Weston) today pleaded guilty to a money laundering conspiracy linked to an international Florida-based company that operated web sites. Subscription “child modeling”. Power faces up to 20 years in federal prison.

According to court documents, Tatiana Power (also known as “Tanya Power”) helped run the financial affairs of Newstar Enterprise, an internet-based business aimed at the for-profit sexual exploitation of vulnerable children under the control. covered in “child modeling”. through a collection of websites called the Newstar websites. Power did so as vice president and part owner of Power Trading, Inc., a Florida company used to control, operate, and disguise the true nature of the Newstar business. From 2009 to November 2019, Power served as “accountant” for Power Trading (and therefore Newstar Enterprise). She oversaw Power Trading’s QuickBooks, filed her annual business registration documents, managed her bank accounts, paid salaries, helped wire money to foreign co-conspirators, and advised co-conspirators on how to evade law enforcement and conceal the true nature of monetary transactions. She regularly helped transfer money and make payments for Newstar Enterprise. From January 2009 to November 2019, Power and her now deceased husband Kenneth Power made a profit of $ 2,211,651.89 on Newstar’s websites.

The Newstar company and the status of the other defendants

According to court documents, founded around 2005, Newstar Enterprise built, maintained, hosted and operated Newstar’s websites on servers in the United States and abroad. To fill Newstar’s websites with content, members of Newstar Enterprise sought out, attracted, solicited and recruited men and women under the age of 18, some of whom were prepubescent, to use as “model children” for the sites. Newstar Web. Using recruited child victims, Newstar Enterprise has produced more than 4.6 million sexualized images and videos for distribution and sale on Newstar’s websites. Some of these images and videos, although not nude, showed minors engaging in sexually explicit behavior. For example, images and videos sold on Newstar’s websites showed children as young as 6 years old in sexual and provocative poses, wearing police and cheerleader costumes, thong underwear, underpants. – sheer clothes, revealing swimsuits, tights and miniskirts. Most of the child victims, recruited from Ukraine, Moldova and other Eastern European countries, were particularly vulnerable due to their age, family dynamics and poverty. Law enforcement has disabled the servers hosting Newstar’s websites.

The Newstar Company has maintained a membership roster for subscribers and customers of Newstar’s websites, from 101 countries around the world. Images in website galleries were freely available to the public for preview, but better access and more content required the purchase of a subscription. The sale of alleged “child modeling” content on Newstar’s websites generated more than $ 9.4 million during the conspiracy. To process, receive and distribute this money, members of Newstar Enterprise fraudulently opened merchant and bank accounts in the United States and laundered the proceeds using a bogus jewelry company.

To date, six members of Newstar Enterprise have been charged in connection with Newstar’s websites. The table below shows the status of each case.

Last name

File number

Charges)

Status

Maximum penalty

Power of Tatiana

8: 21-cr-244-MSS-AAS

Conspiracy to commit money laundering

Pleaded guilty, sentence pending

20 years in prison

Kenneth power

8: 21-cr-00032-SDM-AAS

Conspiracy to advertise child pornography; conspiracy to distribute child pornography

Defendant deceased; Case closed

60 years in prison

Plamen Velinov

8: 21-cr-342-VMC-SPF

Conspiracy to advertise child pornography; conspiracy to distribute child pornography

Indicted

50 years in prison

Patrice Wilowski-Mevorah

8: 21-cr-00206-MSS-TGW

Conspiracy to commit money laundering

Pleaded guilty, sentenced to more than 5 years in prison

Anthony lee kendall

8: 21-cr-358-SCB-TGW

Conspiracy to commit money laundering; promotion of money laundering; money laundering

Defendant deceased

100 years in prison

Marie Lou

Björkman

8: 21-cr-00227-SDM-AAS

Conspiracy to commit money laundering

Pleaded guilty, sentence pending

20 years in prison

The defendants have also been told that the United States intends to confiscate a total of $ 9.4 million, which is believed to be attributable to the proceeds of the offenses, in addition to real estate located in Florida.

These cases were investigated by Homeland Security Investigations in Tampa and the High Tech Investigation Unit of the Division of Child Exploitation and Obscenity (CEOS) of the Criminal Division. Department of Justice, with substantial assistance provided by the Homeland Security Investigations offices in Fort Lauderdale, Athens and The Hague. , US Customs and Border Protection in Sofia, Bulgaria, as well as the IRS criminal investigation in Tampa.

US Deputy Prosecutor Frank Murray of the Middle District of Florida and Prosecutor Kyle Reynolds of CEOS are continuing these cases.

This investigation benefited from the cooperation of foreign law enforcement agencies and substantial assistance from the Republic of Bulgaria, the prosecution of the Supreme Court of Cassation and the national investigation service; Center for International Legal Assistance (IRC), North Holland Unit; and the Czech Republic, Supreme Public Prosecutor’s Office, Czech Police. The Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs provided investigative assistance and its Office for Overseas Prosecution Development, Assistance and Training (OPDAT) provided investigative assistance. capacity building and mentoring.

An indictment is simply a formal charge that an accused has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and each accused is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

About Margaret L. Portillo

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