Dental Office Worker Pleads Guilty In Check Cashing Scheme

Fraudulently Endorsed 184 Insurance Reimbursement Checks Totaling $400,954

September 26, 2008

Greenbelt, Maryland - Michelle Rampersad, age 31, of Frederick, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to wire fraud in connection with a three year scheme to fraudulently endorse her employer’s insurance reimbursement checks and deposit the checks for her own benefit, including gambling expenses, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein.

According to her plea agreement, Rampersad worked at a dental practice located in Greenbelt, Maryland, and was responsible for logging in reimbursement checks from insurance carriers and preparing the checks for deposit into the office bank account. Beginning at least in March 2004, Rampersad fraudulently endorsed the checks to herself, using a prescription stamp bearing the name of the dental practice to make it appear as if the checks had been endorsed by the dental practice to Rampersad. She deposited the checks into her personal bank account. She failed to log the checks into the office accounting system in an effort to conceal the fraud.

Under this scheme, from March 2004 to August 2007, Rampersad fraudulently endorsed approximately 184 checks totaling $400,954.04 and used the funds for her own benefit, including gambling expenses.

Rampersad faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, followed by five years of supervised release. U.S. District Judge Alexander Williams, Jr. has scheduled sentencing for December 5, 2008 at 9:30 a.m. As part of her plea agreement, Rampersad has agreed to pay restitution for the full amount of the loss.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein thanked the U.S. Postal Inspection Service for its investigative work and commended Assistant United States Attorney Jonathan C. Su, who is prosecuting the case.


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