Former Homeland Security Investigator Sentenced to Over 10 Years for Money Laundering, False Statements, and Tax Evasion Convictions

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – Today, Tyrone Cedric Duren, 50, of Bonsall, California was sentenced by Judge John A. Houston to 130 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release. The court also ordered the forfeiture of Duren’s primary residence, a money judgment of $275,000, and restitution to the Internal Revenue Service. Duren previously pleaded guilty to 19 counts including charges of money laundering, making false statements, and tax evasion.

While working as a federal agent specializing in the investigation of bulk cash smuggling, Duren stole money from individuals smuggling drug proceeds to Mexico. Duren then laundered those funds by depositing them into personal and business accounts, and used the stolen cash for personal purchases. Over several years, Duren used his position as a federal agent to place GPS trackers on vehicles used to transport proceeds from drug sales. Duren then took some of the drug money after it was seized, laundered it into his own accounts, and spent it on real estate and international travel.

For example, during a July 2013 traffic stop, Duren stole money concealed in the hidden compartment of a vehicle on which he had previously placed a GPS tracker. In March 2014, Duren was tracking a vehicle he suspected to be loaded with cash as it headed toward Mexico. The vehicle was stopped and searched at a Border Patrol Checkpoint and found to contain a large amount of cash concealed in laundry detergent boxes. Duren took custody of the seized cash, but before putting it into evidence, Duren took over $100,000 for himself. He later admitted that he deposited the stolen money into business and personal accounts to conceal those thefts. Duren then failed to file taxes for 2013 to further hide his theft. Duren also lied numerous times to agents who were investigating his crimes.

Agents from the Department of Homeland Security-Office of Inspector General, Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Office of Professional Responsibility and Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Customs and Border Protection-Office of Professional Responsibility, and the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigations conducted this investigation. The United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of California is recused. Assistant United States Attorneys Kevin Rapp, Abbie Broughton Marsh, and Mark Wenker of the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona prosecuted this case.  

CASE NUMBER:            CR-16-02892-JAH
RELEASE NUMBER:    2020-066_Duren

Source: U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Arizona