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Sentencing — Amount of loss

Amount of loss

In calculating the amount of loss in an internet fraud scheme, where the defendants knew of the scope of the conspiracy, it was not error to count the entire value of the scheme.

“On remand, the district court made appropriate findings regarding jointly undertaken criminal activity, and its findings are well-supported by the record and reasonable inferences drawn therefrom. In this case, there is a single scheme, similarities in modus operandi, coordination of activities among co-schemers, and sharing of resources, including information and rides to currency exchanges. Further, both Salem and Ganescu knew of the scope of the scheme and participated in it fully and for a lengthy time period—more than two years. And by returning a portion of the fraud proceeds to the Romanian schemers, the Chicago area coschemers, including Salem and Ganescu, ‘would ensure that repeat business would be sent their way,’ United States v. Aslan, 644 F.3d 526, 530 (7th Cir. 2011), thus promoting the scheme and other co-schemers’ activities. The evidence raised a reasonable inference that Salem and Ganescu and the co-schemers identified by the district court were working together in jointly underaken criminal activity, as opposed to working independently and autonomously. By working together and coordinating their efforts, Salem and Ganescu assisted and furthered (or promoted) the other coschemers’ criminal acts which were part of the joint criminal activity. Contrary to the defendants’ assertion, and as the record shows, the district court did not conclude that by participating in the scheme, Salem and Ganescu agreed to advance the goals of the entire scheme and are thus accountable for jointly undertaken activity. Their assertion is further undermined by the fact that they were not held accountable for the conduct of all the Chicago area defendants.”


10-3682 & 10-3715 U.S. v. Salem

Appeals from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Darrah, J., Tinder, J.

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