A man from Argentina convicted in an international extortion scheme against people seeking romance through witchcraft and magic spells was sentenced Monday.
According to the Office of the U.S. Attorney, Ariel Boiteaux, is the mastermind behind the scheme that defrauded women in the United States, South America, and Europe.
According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, Boiteaux used the website, Amarres Inmediatos, to perform remote love spell rituals. He instructed women to buy and drink alcohol during the rituals.
Once the women were intoxicated, he would tell them to take pictures and videos of sexual acts, the U.S. Attorney wrote in a sentencing memo.
Amarres Inmediatos would then threaten to post the sexually explicit recordings online unless the client paid money to keep them private.
One victim was extorted for over $320,000 by Amarres Inmediatos in the beginning of 2017, according to court documents.
In the fall of 2017, an undercover agent from Homeland Security Investigations reached out to the service. Boiteaux offered to sell the agent some of the sexually explicit recordings of clients. Boiteaux was arrested in Paraguay by officers.
Boiteaux was wheeled into the downtown San Diego courtroom in a wheelchair Monday with a long beard past shoulder-length.
Federal Judge Marilyn Huff sentenced Boiteaux to 24 months in prison with credit for a year and a half served in a Paraguay prison.
After serving six months in a United States prison, Boiteaux will be deported to Argentina. He is also ordered to pay $7,200 in restitution.
One of the victims was on the phone during the sentencing hearing. She told the judge the sexually explicit images of her are still up on social media sites.
The judge said it was outside the court's authority to make the websites take the images down. However, the U.S. Attorney's Office said they would work with the victim to try to remove the images.