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Feds: Branford Woman Sentenced for Failing to Report Currency Transactions

The 54-year-old was sentenced Friday to two years of probation — during which she must perform 100 hours of community service — for structuring currency transactions to evade reporting requirements.

Credit: Patch file photo
Credit: Patch file photo
The following is a press release from the Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut.

Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that Dawn M. Guarino, also known as Dawn DeCapua Guarino, 54, of Branford, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Stefan R. Underhill in Bridgeport to two years of probation, during which she must perform 100 hours of community service, for structuring currency transactions to evade reporting requirements. 

Guarino pleaded guilty to the offense on January 30, 2014. CFederal law requires all financial institutions to file a Currency Transaction Report (CTR) for currency transactions that exceed $10,000. 

To evade the filing of a CTR, individuals will often structure their currency transactions so that no single transaction exceeds $10,000. 

Structuring involves the repeated depositing or withdrawal of amounts of cash less than the $10,000 limit, or the splitting of a cash transaction that exceeds $10,000 into smaller cash transactions in an effort to avoid the reporting requirements. 

Even if the deposited funds are derived from a legitimate means, financial transactions conducted in this manner are still in violation of federal criminal law.

According to court documents and statements made in court, over the course of 18 days in October and November 2009, Guarino cashed 18 checks made payable to her in the amount of $9,900 and totaling $178,200. 

The transactions occurred at 13 different branches of two banks in eight towns in the New Haven area. 

 The checks, which were from her attorney, represented Guarino's portion of a settlement of a Connecticut civil lawsuit stemming from an automobile accident. 

At the time, Guarino knew that the bank was required to issue a report for a currency transaction in excess of $10,000, and her intention was to evade the transaction reporting requirements.

As part of her sentence, GUARINO was ordered to forfeit $13,000.

This matter was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation, and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Peter S. Jongbloed.
Hap Storer May 16, 2014 at 09:30 PM
Other than violating a banking regulation that enables the Feds to watch citizens' financial activities, just what did this woman do wrong? At what point do we stop forfeiting our rights?
Robert B. May 17, 2014 at 06:49 AM
Actually, Hap, when any financial transaction exceeds a certain amount, the government needs to get it's fair share. Why else would the IRS get involved? She tried to evade paying her taxes and got caught, and now must pay for her crime.
maureen o'connor May 17, 2014 at 08:51 AM
Why did the lawyer agree to do the payout that way? The lawyer would also hold some responsibility for this, no? If the money was being held in escrow, it also seems like taxes would have already been paid on it. Strange story and very odd how people can ruin their lives over money.

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