News and Press Releases

News and Press Releases

Three sentenced for conspiring to pass counterfeit currency

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 12, 2012


MINNEAPOLIS – Earlier today in federal court, three individuals were sentenced for manufacturing counterfeit United States currency. U.S. District Court Chief Judge Michael J. Davis sentenced Scott Jon Buelow, age 48, to two years of probation, including 90 days of home confinement; Daniel Ernest Richter, age 38, and Tressa Dee Weeden-Bootz, age 26, each were sentenced to two years of probation. None of the three has a known address. Each was sentenced on one count of conspiracy to pass counterfeit obligations. The three were indicted on May 11, 2011, and all three have pleaded guilty to the offense charged. In addition, the three were ordered to pay $2,900 in joint restitution.

Following today’s sentencing, Louis Stephens, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Secret Service’s Minneapolis Field Office, said, “This successful investigation and prosecution is an excellent example of how effective federal, state and local law enforcement partnerships are in combatting this type of multi-jurisdictional crime. The combined resources and unique expertise of the various agencies and departments that worked this investigation brought an end to a criminal enterprise that had proven adept at defrauding businesses throughout the Twin Cities region.”

In his plea agreement, Richter admitted that from March 1, 2008, to April 2, 2009, he conspired with Buelow and Weeden-Bootz to pass counterfeit $100 bills in an effort to obtain money and merchandise from retail businesses. In addition, both Buelow and Richter admitted manufacturing bills at a St. Paul residence in March and October of 2008.

In her plea agreement, Weeden-Bootz admitted passing the phony bills at several hotels. On June 5, 2008, Richter and Weeden-Bootz were arrested in a Bloomington hotel room. At that time, they were found in possession of materials commonly used to manufacture counterfeit currency, including paper, a printing template, desktop computers, and instructions for the manufacturing process.

In his plea agreement, Buelow admitted passing counterfeit bills at a St. Paul thrift store, a St. Paul baby store, and a St. Paul bar in January of 2009, as well as a St. Paul pharmacy in February of 2009.
This case was the result of an investigation by the U.S. Secret Service, the Minnesota Financial Crimes Task Force, the St. Paul Police Department, the Bloomington Police Department, the Burnsville Police Department, and the West St. Paul Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kimberly A. Svendsen.

The Financial Crimes Task Force was established pursuant to state law. It is comprised of local, state and federal law enforcement investigators, who work to combat the growing trend of cross-jurisdictional financial crimes. The task force is overseen by an advisory board, also created under state law.

The Secret Service and the Minnesota U.S. Attorney’s Office want to remind people how to check for counterfeit currency. For more information, visit
http://www.secretservice.gov/know_your_money.shtml

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