Angad Singh Chandhok Sentenced
Indian National Sentenced in Tech Support Scheme that Defrauded Elderly Americans
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – An Indian national who sought asylum in the United States and then played a critical role in ensuring that an international tech-support scheme succeeded in defrauding Americans, many of them elderly, of their life savings, has been sentenced to six years in federal prison, announced United States Attorney Zachary A. Cunha.
While living in California, Angad Singh Chandhok, 34, operated a long-running and complex money laundering network, in which he created and used shell companies to move millions of dollars stolen from Americans through an online tech support scheme, and later an online travel fee scheme. Chandhok, who had at least five others working at his direction, was in direct contact with high-ranking international members of the scheme.
United States Attorney Zachary A. Cunha noted, “It is the sad reality that, each and every day, fraudsters all over the world target vulnerable and elderly Americans in efforts to trick them out of their savings and livelihoods; sophisticated criminals like Mr. Chandhok are an essential part of these fraud schemes. Fortunately, thanks to a superb investigation undertaken by Newport Police in seamless collaboration with Homeland Security Investigations, this defendant has been brought to justice and held accountable for the financial harm he has visited on his victims.”
Newport Police Chief Gary T. Silva commented, “This case is a perfect example of how local detectives Lt. Michael Naylor and Sgt. Scott Moody, working alongside the United States Attorney’s Office and Homeland Security Investigations, were able to follow the money taken from fraud victims in Rhode Island and Massachusetts, and laundered to California and countries abroad, and eventually arresting Chandhok and holding him accountable.”
“Chandhok operated a sophisticated money laundering network to launder the fraudulent proceeds of scams targeted at elderly individuals—defrauding them of over a million dollars. This laundering network allowed the fraudsters to move the proceeds of their scams out of the country, but our investigation caught up with them.” said Matthew Millhollin, Special Agent in Charge for the Homeland Security Investigations’ Boston Field Office. “These types of scams are all too common and we encourage any other victims to come forward and reach out to law enforcement for assistance.”
According to court documents, Indian students who were present in the United States on visas, including four in Newport, RI, received funds from victims of the tech support scheme. They then transferred the funds to accounts controlled by Chandhok for further laundering. Chandhok’s money laundering business provided an essential link between the participants of the fraud scheme in the United States and others who were operating internationally.
According to information presented to the court, Chandhok’s criminal activity spanned two years, during which time he “cleaned” at least than $1.5 million dollars. The government’s evidence showed that in just one month he laundered nearly $930,000.
Chandhok pleaded guilty on August 19, 2019, to conspiracy to launder criminal proceeds. He was sentenced on Thursday by U.S. District Court Chief Judge John J. McConnell, Jr., to 72 months of incarceration to be followed by 3 years of federal supervised release.
Chandhok is wanted in his native country of India for fraud, and he was an international fugitive from justice at the time he engaged in his sophisticated money laundering activities here in the United States.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sandra R. Hebert.