Money laundering counts added to Fairbanks racketeering case

Posted: Wednesday, September 26, 2001

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A federal grand jury has expanded a racketeering, drug dealing and loan-sharking case against a Fairbanks businessman.

The jury returned an amended indictment against Bruno Bodonici, charging the massage parlor owner with 124 assorted federal counts, including money laundering and possession of stolen mail.

Bordonici, the 61-year-old owner of the Oriental Massage Parlor and International Check Cashing, was originally indicted in June on the first 102 charges. The charges included 67 counts of using an interstate facility in aid of a racketeering enterprise, 21 counts of distributing a controlled substance and three counts of debt collection by extortionate means.

Bordonici also was indicted on weapons counts and charges of conspiracy, money laundering and possession of stolen mail.

In the new indictment, handed down last week, Bordonici faces 22 more money laundering charges. He is accused of using tens of thousands of dollars in funds garnered from illegal activities to write checks, hand out cash and make loan payments between April 1998 and Nov. 2000.

Bordonici also faces a new charge of perjury, based on allegations he lied about his financial situation in a June court hearing in order to qualify for a court-appointed lawyer.

According to the indictment, Bordonici claimed to be worth $4,000, have no bank accounts, no money owed him and no substantial property. Federal prosecutor Stephen Cooper said he believes Bordonici to be in possession of a substantial amount of property and assets, including tens of thousands of dollars in cash, money owed him, real estate and other property, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported.

Several other charges were reshuffled in the new indictment as well.

Also indicted in June were Bordonici's brother Ramiz Bordonici, who allegedly took over the Oriental Massage Parlor after Bruno Bordonici was first arrested under state drug charges in November, and Irene Smithson, who allegedly took over the business from Ramiz Bordonici for a period in April.

Smithson, who was charged with one count of conspiracy, still faces the charge but her case has since been separated.

The case against Ramiz Bordonici, who faces money laundering and conspiracy charges, remains the same.

The new indictment is the latest wrinkle in a long and convoluted case. Bruno Bordonici was originally arrested in November of last year on state charges of drugs and weapons misconduct, as well as promoting prostitution. The state dropped the charges in April in lieu of the larger case planned by federal prosecutors.

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