May 21, 2021
Florida Woman Pleads Guilty and Former Foreman Sentenced for Household Goods Moving Fraud
On May 21, 2021, Phyllis Quincoces pleaded guilty in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio to conspiring in a racketeering enterprise which defrauded more than 1,800 individuals using moving companies located throughout the United States, valued between $1 million to $3.5 million. On May 17, 2020, the same court sentenced Vladimir Pestereanu to time served, which consisted of 33 months of incarceration, 2 years of supervised release, and a $100 special assessment. On January 24, 2020, Pestereanu pleaded guilty to conspiring in the same racketeering enterprise as Quincoces. Quincoces and Pestereanu participated in a scheme that defrauded, extorted, and stole from customers who hired certain moving companies to move their household goods. To obtain customers, the moving companies allegedly provided low binding estimates and promised to beat their competitors’ prices. According to the investigation, the scheme involved loading a customer’s goods onto the truck, increasing the price of the move, and holding the goods hostage until the customer paid the inflated prices. They also charged customers for moving more cubic feet of household goods than they actually loaded and did not deliver some household goods at all. When customers complained, the conspirators would shut down the latest iteration of the moving company and open a new one, falsifying information about the owners’ identities in order to fraudulently receive operating licenses from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
DOT-OIG is conducting this investigation with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.