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Orlando, Florida - U.S. District Judge John Antoon, II sentenced Lavitress Williams (33, Orlando) to 5 years, and three months in federal prison for her role in a counterfeit traveler’s check scheme. She was also sentenced to 5 years of supervised release and ordered to pay $44,728.33 in restitution to Target. Williams pleaded guilty on January 4, 2012.
According to court documents and evidence presented at the trial of a co-defendant, Williams was involved in a conspiracy and scheme by which counterfeit traveler’s checks were passed at Target stores located throughout the Southeastern United States. Other conspirators manufactured the counterfeit traveler’s checks, which Williams and other conspirators used to purchase merchandise at various Target stores. Williams and her conspirators would take the fraudulently obtained merchandise to different Target stores, where the merchandise would be returned for cash refunds. They would then divide the cash amongst themselves. From September 2011 to December 2011, Williams and her conspirators passed over 100 counterfeit checks, at over forty Target stores, located in six states. The scheme resulted in a loss to Target of $44,728.33.
Williams is one of six individuals who has been prosecuted for their role in this conspiracy and scheme. The following are the sentences of the other five individuals:
|Lottie Davis||Conspiracy, two counts of bank fraud, and four counts of making, passing, or possessing counterfeit securities||
20 months in federal prison and 3 years of supervised release
|Baresha Williams||Bank fraud||18 months in federal prison and 3 years of supervised release|
|Darrel Dopson||Conspiracy and bank fraud||Time served and 3 years of supervised release|
|Brandy Hooks||Conspiracy||3 years probation|
|Larry Wilson||Conspiracy||3 years probation|
This case was investigated by the United States Secret Service. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Roger B. Handberg.