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NEWS RELEASE

OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY

WESTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI


MATT J. WHITWORTH


Contact Don Ledford, Public Affairs ● (816) 426-4220 ● 400 East Ninth Street, Room 5510 ● Kansas City, MO 64106

www.usdoj.gov/usao/mow/index.html


MARCH 31, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


FORMER BRANSON MAN INDICTED

FOR IDENTITY THEFT, FRAUD


            SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Matt J. Whitworth, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a former Branson, Mo., man was indicted by a federal grand jury today for identity theft and fraud.


            Edward Lee Raifsnider, 49, who used a number of aliases, formerly of Branson, was charged in a five-count superseding indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield. Today’s indictment replaces an Oct. 22, 2008, indictment and adds two additional counts of aggravated identity theft to the original fraud charges.


            Today’s indictment alleges that Raifsnider transported across state lines a 2002 Harley-Davidson Road King motorcycle that he obtained by fraud. According to the indictment, Raifsnider purchased the motorcycle for $16,500 on May 26, 2004, in Kenosha, Wis. Raifsnider allegedly used a counterfeit cashier’s check and a false identity to make the purchase, then used another false identity to title the motorcycle in Iowa and sell it to another person on July 2, 2004.


            The indictment also charges Raifsnider with possessing with the intent to unlawfully use several identification documents – including three driver’s licenses in different names, a Social Security card, several credit and debit cards and two birth certificates – and with possessing document-making implements (including a notebook computer, a scanner/printer, an electronic check writer, blank identification cards with magnetic strips, a notary stamp, blank check stock and other items) with the intention of producing false identification documents.


            In addition, Raifsnider is charged with two counts of aggravated identity theft. Raifsnider allegedly possessed two persons’ identity documents on Aug. 12, 2004, in Taney County, Mo., during and in relation to committing the offenses of mail fraud, wire fraud and bank fraud.


            Today’s indictment also includes two forfeiture allegations, which would require Raifsnider to forfeit to the United States $41,000 as well as all of the document-making implements.


            Whitworth cautioned that the charges contained in this indictment are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.


            This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven M. Mohlhenrich. It was investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

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This news release, as well as additional information about the office of the United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, is available on-line at

www.usdoj.gov/usao/mow/index.html