Local News

John Friedlund arrested on federal money laundering charges

SPOKANE, Wash. - A man, arrested last year for letting a 105-year-old woman live in squalor in her Kettle Falls home, has been taken into custody by federal authorities for money laundering hundreds of thousands of dollars.

A grand jury indictment handed down on August 21 against John Friedlund alleges that between May and October of 2009, on 11 separate occasions, he wired varying amounts of cash to several recipients in Texas and the United Kingdom. The amounts ranged from $12,000 to $85,000.

Friedlund was arrested in August 2011 on nine counts of theft for allegedly stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from Kettle Falls resident Frances Swan.

He had been arrested previously, in June 2011, after a Stevens County Sheriff's detective went to Swan's home and found her living in squalor and begging for food. Friedlund told authorities he was taking care of Swan, who was 105 at the time.

Neighbors said he had been living with her for approximately five to six years.

Friedlund federal charges arrest vo

Swan was taken from the home and transferred to the Buena Vista nursing home in Colville, where she later celebrated her 106th birthday.

After his August 2011 arrest, the Stevens County Prosecutor's Office charged that Friedlund sent thousands of dollars of Swan's money to a person by the name of Steven Smith in Texas. He was later charged with attempting to influence Smith's testimony by telling him things to say to investigators.

This week's indictment alleges that he transferred more than $300,000 in cash to a person identified by the initials S.S. in Texas as well as a number of others in the U.K.

Friedlund allegedly met Smith through a social networking site called GaySugarDaddys.com.

The indictment also charged that Friedlund failed to pay federal income taxes from 2007 through 2011.

Friedlund, who has told authorities every time he has been arrested on new charges that he was ill and wouldn't survive the night in jail, was arrested earlier this week and is currently in custody.

His bail hearing is set for August 27 at the federal courthouse before Magistrate Cynthia Imbrogno.