An illegal gold mining camp in La Pampa, in the southern Peruvian jungle. AFP / ERNESTO BENAVIDES
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A man who considered himself the Pablo Escobar of gold smuggling and two other former workers at a Miami-area refinery imported more than $1 billion in illegally mined gold from South America in a vast money laundering scheme from 2013 to 2016, U.S. prosecutors say.Prosecutors say the men purchased the illegal gold from early 2013 to 2016 . During Granda's bail hearing in March, Maderal said Granda alone coordinated the laundering of more than $1 billion in illegal gold.During Granda's bail hearing, Magistrate Judge Andrea Simonton said she considered the text messages to be crucial evidence.Prosecutors said the three cultivated relationships with gold sellers by entertaining them and bringing to Miami.
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