Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

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Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

canadiana
Administrator
This post was updated on .
 
https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/canada/vancouver-man-laundered-tens-of-millions-of-crime-cash-us-alleges/ar-BBK70o6?li=AAggFp5&ocid=BHEA000
https://www.perthnow.com.au/news/crime/australian-crims-used-modified-blackberry-ng-b88771539z
twitter.com/kbolan
Vancouver man laundered 'tens of millions' of crime cash, U.S. alleges 4/28
 Vancouver Sun
Kim Bolan
4 hrs ago

     A Vancouver businessman alleged to have sold encrypted BlackBerries to international drug-trafficking organizations laundered “tens of millions” of dollars of his illicit profits, U.S. law enforcement says in court documents.

     Vincent Ramos, who owns Phantom Security Communications, was arrested in Washington state last Wednesday and is facing racketeering, drug-trafficking, conspiracy and money-laundering charges in San Diego.

     The U.S. alleges he sold 20,000 of his specialized devices, as well as access to his encrypted communication network, to organized crime groups around the world, including the deadly Sinaloa cartel in Mexico, headed by Joaquin (El Chapo) Guzman.

     And Ramos used shell companies and crypto currencies to launder that money, documents obtained by Postmedia News say.

       “Based on reports of the RCMP, Australia and the U.S. financial investigators and agents that I have reviewed, bank records, corporate ownership filings in Canada, Singapore and Hong Kong show that Phantom Secure generated tens of millions of dollars in revenue by facilitating the crimes of transnational criminal organizations and protecting these organizations from detection by law enforcement,” FBI special agent Nicholas Cheviron says in an affidavit filed in court.

     “I know that to launder its ill-gotten gains and maintain its members’ anonymity, the Phantom Secure enterprise uses crypto currencies, including Bitcoin, and shell companies.”

     Ramos appears to own only one property in B.C. — a New Westminster condo assessed this year at $424,000.

     The U.S. documents don’t name the shell companies or state in which country they have been set up.

     Meanwhile, in B.C., where Ramos started his company in 2008, he owes the government almost $150,000 in unpaid sales tax.

     Last November, the B.C. director of provincial sales tax obtained a court order to seize and sell the assets of Phantom Secure because of the unpaid $147,298.23 in tax. The court order lists Phantom Secure’s offices as being in Vancouver in the 200-block West 7th Avenue.

     But Postmedia visited the multi-unit building Friday and found no reference to the controversial encryption company. A different Richmond address is listed on Phantom Secure’s most-recent B.C. corporate records. But the unit is a UPS Store and not a storefront for Ramos’s company.

     Sources told Postmedia that Phantom Secure didn’t operate a public storefront in Metro Vancouver. But the company did have branches of its business in Los Angeles, Dubai, Mexico and Australia.

     Phantom Secure’s closed-communications system shut down about noon Friday, according to some system-users.

     The company issued a news release from Dubai in August 2015 announcing a new “online store.”

     “Today, after months of anticipation, the encrypted telecom company giant Phantom Secure launches their new online store at phantomencrypt.com,” the release says. “A veteran in the secure-communications industry, Phantom Secure has been delivering military-grade encrypted Blackberry devices to their clients for over a decade and are now finally about to offer an ecommerce payment solution to customers worldwide.”

      The link to the store appears to have now been disabled.

     The news release claims the company started in Vancouver in 2004, even though the corporate records indicate an incorporation date of Jan. 2, 2008.

     Australia has been Phantom Secure’s biggest and most controversial market. The U.S. court documents state that half of the 20,000 devices sold by the Vancouver company are in the hands of organized criminals Down Under.

     The Australian Broadcasting Corp. reported in 2014 that one biker gang was using Phantom Secure devices to arrange successful hits on two Hells Angels. Police complained at the time that the murder investigations were stymied by their inability to crack the devices to obtain evidence in the cases.

     The problem of organized crime using various encryption companies to evade police has been an ongoing issue in B.C. and other jurisdictions, according to the Combined Forces Specialized Enforcement Unit.

     “Organized-crime groups have been using encrypted devices for some time now in an attempt to thwart detection by police of any criminal activity, enforcement unit Sgt. Brenda Winpenny said. “This may complicate police investigations, however, police continue to diligently and tenaciously target organized crime leading to successful prosecutions of the individuals who pose the greatest risk to public safety.”

kbolan@postmedia.com

blog: vancouversun.com/tag/real-scoop

twitter.com/kbolan
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

leChef
Good find, Canadiana. I wasn't aware that it was illegal to sell encryption phones, looked a bit into it now, and there must be other laws in play in this case, although the cryptography export laws are complex.

At one point it was illegal to sell this t-shirt outside the US due to the code on it

J
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

J
This case links to another high profile Southern California one that BB has covered....I don't really want to ID the name or case, but some people will put it together.
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

mmd604
In reply to this post by canadiana
Vancouver is a money laundering mecca.  If I was a criminal Canada is where I would be.  Theres a reason the Italian mafia has completely set up shop in Canada. Believe it or not there are some heavy cartel guys in Vancouver
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

canadiana
Administrator
In reply to this post by J
I was wondering that J while reading it that it said San Diego and that recent big bust with all those people  if there was any connection there.I guess the guy should have paid his taxes but sounds like US was onto him.The 2nd link from the Perth,Austrailia newspaper says that they gutted the innards of the phone and replaced them with something else and the charge was pretty astronomical price but wondered how easy it could be to be a double agent or that even the FBI could set up something like that.It would be the perfect way to get on the inside of organized crime almost like back in the 80's when the law  set up shipments of percurser chemicals for meth labs in U.S. And could track people doing it.So easy!
J
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

J
Not that one...but you mentioned the connection I am talking about in your post.  OZ.
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

ToPHeR
The chino and zambada case
J
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

J
Connect the Vancouver case to OZ, and link it back to San Diego.  And you essentially have your answer.  

Not Chino and Zambada.  I am not doing this to be childish, and I honestly don't think it is a crime to speculate, in fact it isn't, but you are essentially unmasking a CW for the government, despite that it is so easily spelled out in the complaint.
sjt
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

sjt
yes here in lexington ky a women was arrested with connections to Sd case one of the  things that stood out was her encrypted phone which not only information could not be extracted but when gps tracking was put on phone number it was unable to track her movements because it was routerd through different networks?
The level of sophistication was high agents commented. She was busted though because they went through her garbage and found kilo packaging with residue. which was not very sophisticated
sjt
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

sjt
it all trails to recent sinaloa money laundering case
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

Siskiyou_Kid
In reply to this post by J
The Phantom Secure indictment does mention that their CW was arrested on Sept. 9, 2015, which was when the player and his co-defendants were picked up. It also specifically names co-defendant "Junior".
Those that say, don't know. Those that know, don't say.
J
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

J
This post was updated on .
He's going to work down that 21 year sentence he received last year.  
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

Siskiyou_Kid
I was surprised at the length of the sentence, but it appears he was involved in moving large loads.
Those that say, don't know. Those that know, don't say.
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

El_Cheme1
In reply to this post by Siskiyou_Kid
CW-1 is not too difficult to identify with a simple google search after reading Chivis post on the main board 😬
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

Siskiyou_Kid
Still, many readers think he's Mexican because he's identified as a CDS associate.
Those that say, don't know. Those that know, don't say.
J
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

J
I hope someone exposes that....

His wife's family is Sinaloa.....They put him on, and he made a few million easy, and now he's cooperating...He could have walked from the game 2 million up years ago.  
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

Siskiyou_Kid
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

Siskiyou_Kid
In reply to this post by J
It's interesting that his wife was with Ernesto Zedillo Jr. for a year or so.
Those that say, don't know. Those that know, don't say.
J
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

J
Should be easy to ID her, if one were dig deep enough.  
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Re: Canadian man busted in U.S. For selling 20,000 military grade encrypted Blackberry phones to organized crime including Sinaloa Cartel

mr.browntown956
In reply to this post by Siskiyou_Kid


Sera principio o Serafin is out of jail and is in witness protection. He was only ordered to forfeit a qrt mil, which is chump change to quinto mes.

Wonder what La d e A is getting out of chino anthrax since Sera spilled the frijoles.

¡tRuCHAS!
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