News and Press Releases

RUDY, ARKANSAS MAN AND WOMAN CONVICTED OF MAIL FRAUD FOR DEFRAUDING THOUSANDS OF VICTIMS OF $3.2 MILLION



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 15, 2012

 






Fort Smith, Arkansas - After a four day jury trial in Fort Smith, Arkansas before Chief U.S. District
Judge P. K. Holmes, III, Sharon Jeannette Henningsen, age 67, and Timothy Shawn Donavan, age 63, were found guilty on June 14, 2012, of one count of Conspiracy to Commit Mail Fraud and eighteen counts of Mail Fraud, announced Conner Eldridge, United States Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas.
United States Attorney Eldridge commented, “The Defendants in this case bilked thousands of
victims out of millions of dollars, including people who thought they were participating in a legitimate
business in order to earn money for their children’s college tuition, for personal retirement, or for medical
bills. In fact, they were victims in the Defendants’ fraudulent enterprise that was designed to generate
profits for their own personal greed. We will continue to vigorously prosecute those who swindle money
through schemes to defraud others.”
"Sharon Henningsen and Timothy Donavan stole over $3.2 million from over 21 thousand
unsuspecting people who were just looking for a way to earn extra money in today's hard economy. The
conviction of these defendants on all 19 counts shows the dedication of Postal Inspectors and the U.S.
Attorney's Office to protecting American consumers," said Fort Worth Division Inspector in Charge Randall C. Till.
Evidence at trial showed that, Henningsen and Donavan conducted a letter-stuffing scheme that
resulted in over 21,000 individuals from across the United States mailing checks or money orders totaling
approximately $3.2 million to the defendants from 2005-2007. The Defendants’ scheme consisted of
mailing false and misleading solicitation letters to more than one million people throughout the United
States inviting them to buy materials to stuff and mail envelopes to make money while working from home. The letters stated that a person could potentially earn up to $2,900 to $5,000 or more weekly by purchasing the envelope-stuffing program for prices ranging from $59 to $149. In fact, no individuals other than the Defendants profited from the scheme. Numerous individuals who responded to the solicitation lost money. The two defendants conducted these schemes out of their home in Rudy, Arkansas and under various names including Home Business Systems, Trail Head Options and Premier Solutions.
Henningsen and Donavan were charged in a Superseding Indictment returned on January 25, 2012,
with one count of Conspiracy to Commit Mail Fraud and 18 counts of Mail Fraud.
Both Henningsen and Donavan face a sentence of up to 20 years in prison and up to a $250,000.00
fine for each count.
The case was investigated by the United States Postal Inspection Service. Assistant United States
Attorney Kyra E. Jenner prosecuted the case for the United States.
* * * E N D * * *

The Office of U.S. Attorney
Conner Eldridge
 
Photo of Conner Eldridge  
Welcomes you to the
Western District of Arkansas
Justice 101
What Makes Schools Safer? Using science to discover what works. Federal funding available. Visit NIJ.gov, keywords: 'comprehensive school safety intiative'
Project Safe Childhood

Help us combat the proliferation
of sexual exploitation crimes
against children.

Stay Connected: Visit us on Twitter