Financial Consultant Charged With Defrauding Export-Import Bank Is Extradited from Mexico
How long is the long arm of the law? Ask Manuel Ernesto Ortiz-Barraza, an independent financial consultant.
Ortiz-Barraza has just been extradited from Mexico to the United States for his alleged role in a scheme to defraud the Export-Import Bank of the United States of over $2.5 million. Ortiz-Barraza had been charged in an indictment unsealed on Oct. 19, 2011, in the Western District of Texas with one count of conspiracy to commit wire and bank fraud, three counts of wire fraud and one count of bank fraud for his alleged role in a scheme with several others to defraud the Ex-Im Bank. Based on a provisional arrest warrant, Mexican authorities arrested Ortiz-Barraza in Mexico on Feb. 13, 2012, and he has been awaiting extradition to the United States, a process which was recently finalized by the Mexican courts.
According to the U.S. indictment and court documents, Ortiz-Barraza and his co-conspirators allegedly conspired to obtain Ex-Im Bank guaranteed loans through banks by creating false loan applications, false financial statements and other documents purportedly for the purchase and export of U.S. goods into Mexico. Ortiz-Barraza and his co-conspirators allegedly falsified shipping records to support their claims of doing legitimate business and did not ship the goods that were guaranteed by the Ex-Im Bank.
After the loan proceeds were received, Ortiz-Barraza and his co-conspirators allegedly split the loan proceeds among themselves. As a result of the alleged fraud, the conspirators’ loans defaulted, causing the Ex-Im Bank to pay claims to lending banks on a loss of over $2.5 million.