A federal grand jury in Salt Lake City returned an indictment, unsealed today, charging a California businessman with conspiracy to defraud the IRS, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and money laundering.
According to the indictment, from 2013 to 2020, Grigor Termendjian of Los Angeles conspired to defraud the IRS by concealing $38 million of taxable fraud proceeds, which he and others laundered through international and domestic bank accounts. The funds involved in the money laundering transactions were allegedly proceeds from a scheme orchestrated in Utah by Termendjian’s brother, Levon Termendzhyan, aka Lev Aslan Dermen; Jacob Kingston; and others.
Termendjian allegedly sought with his co-conspirators to disguise control of the $38 million by engaging in financial transactions that had no legitimate business purpose. The indictment charges that they created bogus loan agreements, falsely characterized the transfer of fraud proceeds as share purchases or investments and used shell accounts to conceal and disguise the nature, location, source, ownership, and control of the money. Some of the transactions allegedly involved withdrawing funds to purchase cashier’s checks. On one occasion, Termendjian allegedly withdrew over $41 million to purchase two cashier’s checks that he held for several months outside of the U.S. financial system.
Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and U.S. Attorney Trina A. Higgins for the District of Utah made the announcement.
IRS Criminal Investigation and the Environmental Protection Agency Criminal Investigation Division are investigating the case.
Senior Litigation Counsel John E. Sullivan and Trial Attorneys Richard M. Rolwing and Erika V. Suhr of the Justice Department’s Tax Division are prosecuting the case.
An indictment is merely an allegation. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
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