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Date: 02-04-2022

Case Style:

United States of America v. Cara Leann Naber

Case Number: 3:19-cr-00062-BJB-RSE

Judge: Benjamin Beaton

Court: United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky (Jefferson County)

Plaintiff's Attorney: United States Attorney’s Office

Defendant's Attorney:


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Description: Louisville, Kentucky criminal defense attorney represented defendant charged with conspiracy to launder drug trafficking proceeds and for structuring bank transactions to evade federal cash transaction reporting requirements.

Cara Leann Naber, 57, was indicted by a Louisville Grand Jury in April 2019 with her codefendant and son, John Frank Naber III, 22. Cara Naber pleaded guilty on October 4, 2021, and was sentenced Wednesday, February 2, 2022, in Louisville. Her son, John Frank Naber, III, pleaded guilty to drug, firearms, and money laundering charges in 2020 and was sentenced to eleven years in prison in January 2021.

As part of a multi-agency narcotics and money laundering investigation targeting Cara Naber’s son, federal authorities executed multiple search warrants in February 2019. Investigators found and seized narcotics and pill pressing equipment which John Frank Naber, III used to manufacture homemade counterfeit Adderall on his family’s property in Oldham County. Naber made his counterfeit pills using methamphetamine and then sold them in bulk to his customers as a vendor on the Dark Web. Authorities also seized drug proceeds, including over $325,000.00 in cash and Bitcoin valued at over $200,000.00.

Cara Naber was charged for her role in laundering proceeds for her son’s drug trafficking operation, including by moving the proceeds through traditional bank accounts and cryptocurrency accounts in her name and by holding cash drug proceeds for her son in her safe deposit boxes. As part of a plea agreement, Cara Naber will pay an additional $420,000.00 towards an asset forfeiture money judgment and a $100,000.00 fine.

“This case highlights the exceptional work of the IRS Criminal Investigation agents assigned to the case as well as the agencies who supported the investigation - HSI, CBP, USPIS, and KSP,” said Michael A. Bennett, United States Attorney for the Western District of Kentucky. “It also serves notice to those in the drug trade that we will leave no stone unturned in identifying, apprehending, and prosecuting those who seek to profit by peddling poison in our communities.”

“This case should be a warning to those using the Dark Web and cryptocurrency to commit drug crimes and launder the proceeds,” said Bryant Jackson, Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation, Cincinnati Field Office. “IRS CI is dedicated to working with our law enforcement partners to vigorously investigate drug traffickers using our financial expertise.”

This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Corinne E. Keel and Robert Bonar. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Criminal Investigation led the financial investigation into Cara Naber and worked in collaboration with several other agencies, including Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), and the Kentucky State Police (KSP).

18:1956(h) Money Laundering Conspiracy
(3)

31:5324(a)(3) Structuring Financial Transactions
(4-12)

Outcome: Defendant was sentenced to 15 months imprisonment (concur); 3 years S/R; $100,000 total fine; $1000 SPA ($100 per convicted count)

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