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Bend FBI agents bring fraud suspect back from Indonesia

Accused of scamming investors for disaster housing

SAN FRANCISCO - Bend FBI agents traveled to Indonesia this week and brought back a deported 68-year-old man who appeared in San Francisco federal court on Friday, accused of a nearly $1 million scheme and falsely claiming to use investors' funds for housing built for disaster victims.

Richard Macadangdang Sales made his initial appearance Friday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Maria-Elena James in the Northern District of California, according to the FBI and Oregon U.S. Attorney's Office.

Last month, a federal grand jury in Eugene indicted Sales on four counts of wire fraud and one count of money laundering for an alleged scheme that cheated investors of more than $900,000, the agencies said in a joint news release.

The indictment alleges that between 2011 and 2013, investors were led to believe Sales was using their investments to recover hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of U.S. Treasury notes located in East Asia and the Pacific. 

Prosecutors said the indictment states that victims believed Sales was building humanitarian housing for victims of natural disasters as part of this recovery process and that they would see returns as high as 100 percent.

Sales has been living outside the U.S. since 2012, authorities said.

Working with the Indonesian National Police and Indonesian Immigration, through the FBI's Legal Attache's office in Jakarta, FBI agents from the Bend Resident Agency traveled to Indonesia and met Sales as he was deported from that country on Thursday.

The FBI agents escorted him back to the United States and arrested him after touching down on U.S. soil.

U.S. Attorney's Office spokesman Kevin Sonoff in Portland said he could not offer further details of any Central Oregon ties to Sales, as they are not part of the now-unsealed indictment.

The judge ordered Sales detained, pending transfer to Oregon by federal marshals for further court proceedings.


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