ADVERTISEMENT
Advertise Here

Sirens & Gavels

Posts tagged: check forgery

Man pleads guilty in bank fraud case

An Arizona man who helped a North Idaho woman commit bank fraud has pleaded guilty.

Charles Earl Baker, 32, faces up to 30 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and five years of probation when he's sentenced June 19 in U.S. District Court in Coeru d'Alene.

Baker pleaded guilty today to conspiracy to commit bank fraud for a scheme involving Michelle Ann Mason, who pleaded guilty earlier this month.

Baker met Mason in late 2010 and opened a bank account that he used to deposit counterfeit, altered or forged checks that had been stolen from mail.

Baker then withdrew the cash using ATMs. Mason admitted to organizing Baker and at least five others to steal mail in the Oldtown, Idaho, area. Mason is to be sentenced June 18.

The case was investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Pend Oreille County Sheriff's Office, Kootenai County Sheriff's Department, Bonner County Sheriff's Office, and the U.S. Secret Service.

Woman guilty in Oldtown mail theft ring

A woman who led a mail theft ring in the Oldtown, Idaho, area pleaded guilty last week in Coeur d'Alene.

Michelle Ann Mason, 27, faces up to 30 years in prison, a $1 million fine and five years of probation when she's sentenced June 18 in U.S. District Court in Coeur d'Alene. She also is to pay $37,790.39 restitution.

Co-defendant Charles Earl Baker is scheduled to begin trial March 27.

Mason admitted to organizing at least six people to steal mail in he Oldtown area. Her co-conspirators opened bank accounts, and Mason deposited counterfeit or forged checks that had been stolen from the mail, then withdraw cash from the accounts through ATMs.

Mason used the money to buy items and pay bills. Her victims included banks, merchants and the intended mail recipients.

Mason pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft Wednesday.

Man wanted for stealing from grandfather

A Spokane man accused of stealing from his grandfather by forging his checks is wanted by Crime Stoppers.

Bryan Henry Morales, 32, was to begin trial this week on a leading organized crime charge for allegedly directing men to cash the forged checks, which cost his grandfather, John Camacho, more than $7,000, according to court documents. He also faces separate charges of forgery and delivery of a controlled substance

Morales never showed up for a pre-trial hearing, and a $10,000 warrant for his arrest was issued Jan. 31.

Crime Stoppers on Wednesday offered a reward for tips that lead to his arrest.

Tod Michael Ives, 49, is charged with nine counts of second-degree identity theft for allegedly cashing the checks. Thomas D. Plante, 28, faces 10 counts.

Morales, 6-foot-4 and 220 pounds, last gave an address in the 1200 block of South Rotchford Drive in the Spokane Valley.

Anyone with information Morales' location is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online.

Reward for tips on check fraud suspect

Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that lead to the arrest of a repeat offender suspected in an extensive check forgery ring.

Tami Jo Raider, alias Tami Hearn, 49, was identified as a suspect after purchasing two couches at Runge Furniture in Coeur d'Alene with a check stolen from a Pend Oreille County home. Several other checks had been stolen and cashed at business in Spokane County and other areas of Washington and in Idaho, according to court documents.

The salesman at the furniture store wrote down the license plate to her 1986 Ford truck, which deputies searched last week after a deputy stopped a man who was driving it on Sept. 9.

Deputies believe Raider cashed at least 17 stolen checks in April and May. Employees at various stores identified Raider as the woman who passed the check, according to court documents.

Charges have not been filed, but Spokane County sheriff's Sgt. Dave Reagan said Deputy Brian Hirzel has probable cause to arrest Raider for 17 counts of identity theft and 17 counts of forgery.

She's also wanted for misdemeanor third-degree theft in an unrelated case. Anyone with tips on her location is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or submit tips online

Get blog updates by email

About this blog

Public safety news from the Inland Northwest and beyond.

Latest comments »

Read all the posts from recent conversations on Sirens & Gavels.

Search this blog
Subscribe to this blog
ADVERTISEMENT
Advertise Here