Grand jurors indict former Lafayette business owner on money laundering, theft charges

ByGeraldine R. Pleasant

May 14, 2022 , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
"Business temporarily closed" reads a sign posted on the door of Deal Zone, 100 South Creasy Lane, Monday, March 8, 2021 in Lafayette

“Business temporarily closed” reads a sign posted on the door of Deal Zone, 100 South Creasy Lane, Monday, March 8, 2021 in Lafayette

LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Grand jurors indicted the former Deal Zone owner of 17 charges ranging from corrupt business influence and theft to tax evasion and money laundering.

Menashi Cohen, 68, of Indianapolis, was arrested Monday on a warrant based on the grand jury’s indictments.

The indictments accuse Cohen of buying property stolen from area stores and then reselling the merchandise at the Deal Zone at 100 South Creasy Lane, Treasure on Pallets at 2834 Old U.S. 231, and CD Land.

He used the money to launch other business ventures, according to the indictments.

The crimes stretch back to 2017.

The investigation involved local police, FBI and Indiana Department of Revenue agents.

Previously: Prosecutor files civil lawsuit for forfeiture of confiscated property

Grand jurors charged Cohen with four counts of theft, four counts of money laundering and four counts of tax evasion.

Additionally, grand jurors indicted Cohen on charges of conspiracy to commit theft, corrupt business influence, failure to remit taxes and failure to maintain records.

Cohen also is charged with perjury for allegedly lying to grand jurors about his ex-wife’s income in 2017 and 2018. Cohen’s alleged perjury was on March 1 and April 14.

Police raided Cohen’s local businesses in March 2021, closing down his business and confiscating his inventory.

Prosecutors later filed a civil lawsuit to collect penalties for what prosecutors believe are ill-gotten gains. That lawsuit is pending.

Tippecanoe County Jail records indicate that Cohen remains incarcerated Wednesday afternoon in lieu of bond.

Reach Ron Wilkins at [email protected]. Follow on Twitter: @RonWilkins2.

This article originally appeared on Lafayette Journal & Courier: Lafayette grand jurors indict business owner of money laundering