Mark Kamil Mrad, 65, of Vienna, pleaded guilty to attempted money laundering in Eastern District Court in Alexandria on Tuesday after he placed money in a vehicle and directed it to be shipped to Lebanon, the U.S. Justice Department announced.
Officals said Mrad, who had been part of a federal sting operation, placed what he believed to be $100,000 inside a Jeep Grand Cherokee and ordered it to be sent to a terrorist operation in Beirut.
Neil H. MacBride, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and James McJunkin, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI Washington Field Office, made the announcement after the plea was accepted by United States District Judge James C. Cacheris.
Mrad faces a maximum penalty of 20 years of imprisonment when he is sentenced Oct. 19. In addition, Mrad will pay a fine of $15,000 and forfeit $5,000 as part of the plea agreement.
According to the statement of facts filed with the plea agreement, Mrad met multiple times between May 2008 and May 2010 with a confidential source who was working on behalf of the FBI.
During those meetings, Mrad discussed ways to illegally ship money to Lebanon. Mrad believed the funds belonged to Hizballah, a designated foreign terrorist organization.
Mrad concealed what he believed to be $100,000 inside a Jeep Grand Cherokee and caused it to be smuggled outside the United States, prosecutors said.