Legal Storm Hits North Miami: Business Owners Charged with Money Launderingok, Bugs Bedevil Food in Inspection Snag

Legal Storm Hits North Miami: Business Owners Charged with Money Laundering

For two Fort Lauderdale business owners, it was an apparent legitimate front, but the mask has come off. Owners of Trident Trade Corp. are Maryna Petushkova and Oleksii Petushkov.

The two are accused of using their firm to launder a quarter of a million dollars in what they thought to be narcotics proceeds, according to a criminal complaint filed on April 4.

U.S. Attorney Markenzy Lapointe for the Southern District of Florida stated in a statement that the pair purportedly traded these money for real currency along with gift cards that were obtained illegally.

According to the case records made public, businesses led by Maryna and Oleksii cashed in gift cards and money orders totaling about $5 million between 2021 and 2023 without the required legal authorization.

They made their first court appearance in Fort Lauderdale, and on April 9 they will have a detention hearing.

The accusations include conspiring to launder money, which has a maximum sentence of 20 years in jail and a large punishment, and operating a money-transmitting business without a license, which carries a maximum term of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

Jeffrey B. Veltri, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Miami Field Office, accompanied U.S. Attorney Lapointe’s statement. This complex story of purported financial fraud emerged following an FBI Miami probe.

Leading the prosecution are Assistant U.S. Attorneys Paul Schwartz and Jeffrey N. Kaplan.

If you’re interested in following this case, you can find pertinent court records under case number 24-mj-06146 on PACER or the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida.