This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2008, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
A Russian immigrant with ties to an international murder plot was sentenced in Salt Lake City's U.S. District Court this week to 51 months in prison for conspiring to produce false passports and identification.
Egor Michailovich Chernov, who lived in Lehi prior to his arrest, must also serve 36 months of supervised release after his prison term ends - if he is not deported, Judge Dale Kimball ordered.
Chernov, 33, is implicated in the death of Rex Judd, an Ontario, N.Y., businessman who disappeared while on a trip to Thailand in September 2005, although Chernov has not been charged in connection with the purported killing.
Chernov allegedly ordered a hit on the man and two Australians carried out the murder in Thailand, according to an FBI affidavit and charging documents.
The FBI affidavit states the murder and the passports falsified by Chernov are "inextricably intertwined."
Chernov and several "co-conspirators" were involved in an international scheme that included creating fake documents for three Eastern European countries, business trips to Thailand and meetings in the Bahamas, according to the FBI affidavit.
Judd, a one-time motivational speaker, was a business partner of Chernov and several of his associates, the affidavit states.
Charlie Flynn, a Canadian investment banker who said he was courted by Chernov's group, previously told The Salt Lake Tribune that he believes Judd was murdered.
Flynn said he looked into investing in real estate and insurance ventures with Chernov's group but ultimately declined to get involved.
Judd, however, put $3.5 million into their schemes and ended up broke, according to Flynn. He said he believes Judd's efforts to get the money back led to his death.
The charges against Chernov state he conspired with others from the fall of 2000 to about September 2006 to produce fake identification documents, including false passports purporting to originate from Russia, Belarus and Bulgaria.