PROVIDENCE, R.I. — A Lawrence man admitted to his participation in a used car fraud ring involving a series of local credit unions, according to federal authorities. 

Hiancarlos Mosquea-Ramos, 28, pleaded guilty Tuesday to his role in a wide-ranging conspiracy to defraud financial institutions in several states, according to a statement released by Acting United States Attorney Richard Myrus in Rhode Island. 

Mosquea-Ramos appeared before U.S. District Court Chief Judge John McConnell Jr. and pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud, Myrus said. 

Mosquea-Ramos was one of nine people indicted by a federal grand jury in Providence in July of last year for his role in the fraud ring.

At least two other men involved in the ring are also from Lawrence, authorities said.  

Authorities said Mosquea-Ramos admitted he participated in schemes as the seller or the buyer of used vehicles, defrauding Merrimack Valley Credit Union, Sharon Credit Union, Digital Federal Credit Union, Metro Credit Union, Direct Federal Credit Union, RTN Credit Union and Workers Credit Union, according to the statement from Myrus. 

"Mosquea-Ramos admitted that by using his own personal identification information along with counterfeit earnings statements, fabricated automobile purchase and sales agreements, and counterfeit motor vehicle titles, he obtained at least $92,000 in fraudulent loans to purchase fictitious cars," the statement read.

A co-conspirator — Jonathan Pimental, 29, also of Lawrence — was listed by investigators as the seller of the cars. Pimental is awaiting trial on a charge of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, according to authorities. 

Mosquea-Ramos also admitted he posed as the seller of various used cars, investigators said. Authorities said co-conspirator Rolando Estrella, 33, of Lawrence prepared false purchase-and-sales agreements and counterfeit automobile titles naming Mosquea-Ramos as seller of the vehicles.

Financial institutions approved a total of more than $275,200 in used car loans, disbursing checks made payable to Mosquea-Ramos, investigators said. The checks were quickly deposited and the money quickly withdrawn and divided among participants of the conspiracy, according to the statement from Myrus.

Estrella is awaiting trial on multiple charges of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, bank fraud, aggravated identity theft and fraudulent use of a social security number, authorities said. 

Mosquea-Ramos is scheduled to be sentenced June 1.

The FBI, U.S. Secret Service, Social Security Administration and Office of the Inspector General were involved in the investigation.

Follow staff reporter Jill Harmacinski on Twitter @EagleTribJill. 



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