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Park Rapids man indicted on fraud, money laundering, drug charges

A 36-year-old Park Rapids man and licensed real estate agent has been indicted on federal wire fraud, money laundering and marijuana charges.

Eric Wayne Moen was charged Aug. 18 and appeared in U.S. District Court Aug. 21 on the charges.

The indictment alleges Moen conspired with others during 2005 in a "scheme to defraud a mortgage company," by allegedly misrepresenting the employment status of a borrower and obtaining funds in connection with the mortgage on a home.

"From Aug. 1 through Nov. 28, 2005, he conspired with others to obtain the funds to purchase a single-family home by means of false and fraudulent pretenses," the U.S. Attorney's office in Minneapolis asserts.

One-hundred marijuana plants were found growing at the home, the indictment states. Moen is also charged with being involved in the pot operation.

The indictment alleges Moen wire transferred $641,840.63 from a mortgage company Nov. 28, 2005, to a title company for the home and pocketed $15,650.87 "knowing that money was derived from the wire fraud."

At the time, Moen was a licensed real estate agent, the complaint states.

The indictment states that from January 2006 through June 18, 2007, "Moen knowingly manufactured 100 or more marijuana plants."

A co-defendant, Kevin Ray Winkelmann, 39, of Shorewood, pled guilty one year ago to one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud for his role in the mortgage fraud scheme.

The money laundering charge carries a maximum 10-year prison term; the conspiracy charge is punishable by a maximum of 20 years and the manufacturing count is punishable by a maximum of 40 years in prison.

The indictment stems from an investigation by the IRS' Criminal Investigation Division and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

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