CHRISTI, Texas – A 40-year-old Houston man has entered a guilty plea in
Corpus Christi federal court to money laundering through wire fraud,
announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.
Mohamad Sylla admitted he conspired with Jose Luis Briseno, 41,
Tynan, and David Contreras, 42, Paso Robles, California, to get a
Houston oil production company to issue paychecks for work Contreras
never completed and while he was not even employed there.
From Jan. 1 to Sept. 11, 2015, Briseno and Sylla were employed at the
company as the service coordinator and South Texas region manager,
respectively. The two men conspired to approve timesheets for Contreras
even though he was no longer employed there. Briseno and Sylla ensured
the timesheets were approved and payments issued. Once Contreras
received the funds, he would split the paycheck with Briseno and Sylla.
As a result, Contreras, Briseno and Sylla falsely obtained funds totaling approximately $40,383.91.
Briseno and Contreras have also pleaded for their roles in the scheme.
U.S. District Judge David Morales will impose Sylla’s sentencing Aug.
31. At that time, Sylla faces up to 20 years in federal prison and a
possible $500,000 maximum fine.
He was permitted to remain on bond pending that hearing.
The FBI conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeremy C. Fugate is prosecuting the case.