Boyton Neuling Clune Iii Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Cour
Bill Mercer, United States Attorney for the District of Montana, announced today that during a federal court session in Billings on January 7, 2009, before Chief U.S. District Judge Richard F. Cebull, BOYTON NEULING CLUNE III, age 36, formerly of Billings, pled guilty to bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. Sentencing is set for April 9, 2009. He is currently released on special conditions.
In an Offer of Proof filed by the United States, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:
CLUNE was a partner in a fencing business in Billings with a friend, identified here as "BS." CLUNE repeatedly used B.S.'s personal information without legal authority. B.S. would have testified that he learned that CLUNE had applied for and received eight credit cards in B.S.'s name and had made purchases with those credit cards. B.S. confronted CLUNE, and even forced him to pose for a photo holding a card that CLUNE had fraudulently obtained.
CLUNE and B.S.'s partnership dissolved and CLUNE eventually left Montana. However he continued to use B.S.'s identity. CLUNE completed an on-line application for a loan from USAA Federal Savings Bank in San Antonio, Texas. CLUNE received a $36,477 loan as if he were B.S., which he used to buy a Lexus. CLUNE had the car titled as if it were B.S.'s.
B.S. would have testifed that none of the documents are his own and that the car transaction involved identity theft and forgery by CLUNE.
CLUNE faces possible penalties of 30 years in prison, a $1,000,000 fine and 3 years supervised release. In addition, CLUNE faces an additional mandatory two year imprisonment, consecutive to any other sentence, for aggravated identity theft.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Eric B. Wolff prosecuted the case for the United States.
The investigation was conducted by the U.S. Secret Service.
A copy of the Offer of Proof can be obtained by contacting Sally Frank at (406) 247-4638.