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San Diego Man Charged with Fraud Scheme

July 15, 2008

Peoria, Ill. - A federal grand jury today returned an indictment charging a San Diego, California man, Marvin Bernard Gold, 79, with defrauding the Unclaimed Property Division of the Illinois State Treasurer’s Office of approximately $51,770. The indictment alleges that in 2003, Gold submitted statements to the Treasurer’s Office falsely claiming he was the owner of property held in the Unclaimed Property Division.

The indictment alleges that in April 2003 Gold submitted a form to the Unclaimed Property Division falsely claiming that he lived on North Sheridan Road in Chicago and was the owner of property abandoned to the State of Illinois. In June 2003, Gold allegedly submitted another form falsely claiming he was someone else and that he was the rightful heir to an estate of an individual who died in 1997. Stocks and bonds owned by the deceased had been transferred form financial institutions to the Unclaimed Property Division of the Illinois State Treasurer’s office. In September 2003, Gold sent a letter containing a copy of a fraudulent social security card to the Treasurer’s Office in support of his earlier fraudulent claim that he was the rightful heir to an estate. In October 2003, the Illinois Treasurer’s Office mailed a check in the amount of $51,770.42 to Gold in California.

The charges are the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service in cooperation with the Illinois State Treasurer’s Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Gregory M. Gilmore.

A summons will be issued for Gold to appear in federal court in Springfield at a date to be determined by the U.S. Clerk of the Court.

If convicted, the offense of mail fraud carries a statutory penalty of up to 20 years in prison.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation; the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

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