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Texas Woman Sentenced in Tampa to 40 Years in Prison on Fraud Convictions


A Texas woman was sentenced to four decades in federal prison in a Tampa courtroom last week after being convicted on money laundering and wire fraud charges.

According to federal prosecutors, Priscilla Ann Ellis was part of a three-person conspiracy, along with her daughter Kenietta Rayshawn Johnson and her attorney Perry Don Cortese, bent on defrauding law firms, title companies, and users of online dating platforms. The state says that these three victimized dozens of individuals and firms throughout the country, obtaining their money in a fraudulent manner, and then laundering it through mostly overseas third-party shell corporations.

Federal prosecutors presented evidence at trial that they say shows Ellis received millions of dollars in fraudulently-obtained funds. They say she proceeded to transfer said funds to a number of different bank accounts under her control in an effort at allegedly foiling attempts by the fraud victims at tracking down their funds upon discovery of the fraud.

Ellis is also accused of producing high-quality forged checks and other documents used in furthering or covering up the alleged fraud.

In addition to serving forty years without parole in federal prison, Ellis' convictions of conspiracy to commit international money laundering and conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud resulted in a money judgment against her in the amount of $9,288,241.36, the forfeiture of various assets, and restitution in the amount of $3,767,196. She will be sentenced next month for convictions in another trial of conspiracy to commit counterfeiting, using interstate commerce facilities in the commission of murder-for-hire, and retaliating against a witness.

The Law Offices of Bjorn Brunvand have been representing people charged with capital murder, felony drug charges, drunk driving, government fraud, and white-collar crimes for over a quarter century. Contact our office today to discuss your Tampa Bay-area state or federal charges.

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  • Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers

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