Prosecutors have agreed to drop charges against a former Las Vegas businessman accused of money laundering and plotting to harm an ex-prosecutor, according to an agreement unsealed Monday.
Rather than face trial and years in federal prison on a 13-count indictment alleging conspiracy to launder money and money laundering, 49-year-old Emile Bouari, who now lives in Florida, has agreed to eight minor conditions for six months, including having his passport returned.
Allegations of a plot to harm Las Vegas attorney Paul Padda surfaced during an undercover investigation of Bouari, who was being sued for defamation by Padda because of comments made about the former prosecutor on a consumer review website.
Bouari, who ran weight-loss clinics in Las Vegas and elsewhere, told the undercover agents he wanted Padda hurt to discourage him from pursuing the defamation suit, the government alleged.
FBI agents informed Padda of the alleged threat and gave him protection, according to prosecutors. But Bouari was never charged in connection with those allegations. Padda did not return a call Monday from a reporter seeking comment.
In February 2016, Bouari and three others were indicted by a federal grand jury on the conspiracy and money laundering charges.
The indictment alleged that the defendants conducted a dozen money laundering transactions with the undercover FBI agents totaling nearly $590,000 between May 2014 and August 2015. Prosecutors said at the time that the evidence included more than 60 secret recordings.
In what’s known as a “pretrial diversion agreement,” Bouari must:
—Notify authorities of his whereabouts.
—Contact a pretrial diversion program officer if he is arrested or questioned by law enforcement.
—Allow an officer to visit his home and confiscate “any contraband observed in plain view.”
—Maintain and seek lawful employment.
—Not possess dangerous weapons.
—Answer truthfully and follow instructions of an officer.
—Not associate with convicted felons or anyone engaged in criminal activity.