Emily M. Sweeney, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, today announced that on October 9, 2001, Makeebrah A. Turner, age 32, of 3537 East 147th Street, Cleveland, Ohio, entered a guilty plea to Count 1 of an indictment charging her with computer fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1030(a)(4), for knowingly exceeding her authorization on the computer systems of her employer, Chase Financial Corporation, in furtherance of a scheme to defraud Chase Financial Corporation and Chase Manhattan Bank.
On August 7, 2001, a federal grand jury in Cleveland, Ohio, returned an indictment charging Makeebrah A. Turner, and a co-defendant, Patrice M. Williams, age 26, of 12700 Shaker Blvd., Apt. 714, Cleveland, Ohio 44120, with two counts of computer fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 1030(a)(4)and 1030(a)(2)(A).
According to court document filed in the case, Turner admitted that between approximately November 1999, and on or about December 12, 2000, in the Northern District of Ohio, Eastern Division, while an employee of the Chase Financial Corporation, 1500 W. 3rd Street, Cleveland, Ohio, did knowingly and with the intent to further a scheme to defraud Chase Manhattan Bank and Chase Financial Corporation, access one or more Chase Manhattan Bank and Chase Financial Corporation computer systems without authorization or in excess of her authorized access on said computer systems, thereby obtaining credit card account numbers and other customer account information pertaining to approximately sixty-eight (68) accounts, which she was not authorized to access in connection with her duties at Chase Financial Corporation. Turner admitted that the aggregate credit limits for the targeted accounts totaled approximately $580,700.00.
Turner further admitted that after fraudulently obtaining said credit card account numbers and customer account information, she distributed and transmitted said financial information to one or more individuals located in the Northern District of Georgia via facsimile transmission, who, in turn, used the credit card accounts and other financial information to fraudulently obtain goods and services valued at approximately $99,636.08, without the knowledge or consent of the account holders, Chase Manhattan Bank or Chase Financial Corporation.
Under the terms of the written plea agreement between Turner and the government, Count 2 of the indictment, which charged a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1030(a)(2)(A), will be dismissed at the time of sentencing. Count 2 charged that between November 1999, and on or about December 12, 2000, Turner intentionally accessed one or more computer systems in excess of her authorized access, thereby obtaining information in a financial record of a financial institution, and obtaining information of a card issuer, as defined in Title 15, U.S.C., Section 1602(n), thereby obtaining information from protected computers for purposes of commercial advantage and private financial gain, and in furtherance of criminal violations of U.S. and Ohio law.
Turner is scheduled to be sentenced on January 8, 2002, by U.S. District Judge Solomon Oliver, Jr., following the completion of a Presentence Investigation by the U.S. Probation Office.
Co-defendant, Patrice Williams, has pleaded not guilty to the charges in the Indictment, and is presently awaiting trial where it will be the government’s burden to prove her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert W. Kern, following an investigation by the Cleveland Office of the United States Secret Service.