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DEA charges father-daughter in international laundering scheme with New York roots

A father and daughter from the Netherlands have been indicted for laundering hundreds of thousands of dollars in narcotics’ profits across four continents, according to federal court documents unsealed recently.

The indictment charged Xiomara Christian with money laundering conspiracy in Albany County between May 7th, 2017 and Nov. 20th, 2018. Xiomara Christian was arrested at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta on June 27th, 2022, after arriving on a tourist visa from Amsterdam.

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Oscar Christian’s name was sealed in the indictment until it was revealed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Bethany Rupert in an Atlanta courtroom. She identified Oscar Christian as a Netherlands-based drug trafficker laundering money with his daughter’s help. They used false companies and encrypted communication apps, including one called Confide, to coordinate the transfer of money around the globe.

The indictment revealed a case that allegedly involved the father-and-daughter duo laundering drug profits from Australia through the United States to the Netherlands, Panama, the United Arab Emirates, and other countries. The covert operation leading to the indictment involved undercover agents from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, Dutch government, and Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission.

The DEA created two bogus companies for the would-be purpose of laundering the alleged drug proceeds, according to federal court documents. The agents played the roles of money launderers, and the Christians unknowingly were working with a DEA undercover agent and met with undercover Dutch agents to launder drug money.

The prosecutor said an Albany-based DEA agent made contact with Oscar Christian “regarding his drug trafficking business and his need to transport drug proceeds internationally.” In May 2017, the prosecutor said, Xiomara Christian introduced herself to the agent as her father’s back-up.

The prosecutor said two initial transactions involved that undercover agent, an Australian agent, and Oscar Christian. A third transaction, in September 2018, involved the DEA agent and Xiomara Christian. She said the daughter solicited the undercover DEA agent to pick up more $90,000 in Australia and wire it to the Netherlands through a New York account. Xiomara Christian then allegedly asked the agent to then pick up more than $100,000 in euros in Amsterdam, convert it to American currency and send it to Panama.

There was no indication that Oscar Christian was arrested or has entered the U.S. Xiomara Christian, who has pleaded not guilty, is being represented by Assistant Federal Public Defender Matthew Trainor, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Douglas Collyer is prosecuting the case. The case is set for trial in April before Senior U.S. District Judge Lawrence Kahn.