News and Press Releases

Reno Woman Charged with Stealing Credit Card Numbers

August 18, 2005

Reno, Nev. - A woman who worked as a food server at a Reno restaurant was indicted yesterday by the Federal Grand Jury on credit card fraud charges, announced Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada.

MICHELLE LYNN WATSON, aka Michelle Lynn Mireles and Michelle Lynn Butler, age 48, a resident of Reno, is charged with three counts of Fraudulent Use of Unauthorized Access Devices and one count of Fraudulently Effecting Transactions with Unauthorized Access Devices. If convicted, she faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on each Fraudulent Use count, and up to 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on the Fraudulently Effecting Transactions count.

It is alleged that between January 1, 2004, and December 31, 2004, MICHELLE LYNN WATSON obtained information from credit cards that had been provided to her by restaurant customers, and later used this information to unlawfully make purchases of items costing in excess of $10,000.

An arrest warrant was issued for WATSON. An initial appearance and arraignment and plea hearing will be scheduled before a U.S. Magistrate Judge in the near future.

The case is being investigated by Special Agents with the United States Secret Service and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Paul L. Pugliese.

The public is reminded that an indictment contains only charges and is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

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