News and Press Releases

Owner of Auto Dealerships Sentenced to Prison for Multi-million Dollar Bank Fraud Conspiracy

Sept. 30, 2011

HOUSTON – Thinh Viet Tieu, the owner, operator and financing broker of NXCESS Motor Cars and All State Motors has been sentenced to federal prison for bank fraud arising from a check kiting scheme perpetrated on a Houston bank, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.  

Tieu, 46, of Houston, was sentenced today by Senior U.S. District Judge David Hittner to 66 months in federal prison to be followed by a five-year-term of supervised release. Additionally, the court has ordered Tieu to pay $2,140,314.31 in restitution to Well Fargo (formally Wachovia Bank). Indicted in March 2010, Tieu pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud in June 2010.

At the re-arraignment hearing, Tieu admitted to defrauding the Wells Fargo Company Wachovia bank, a financial institution located in Houston from June 1, 2009, through Aug. 31, 2009, with the assistance of his co-conspirator, Matthew Robbins, the Financial Center Manager for Wachovia bank. During that timeframe, Tieu presented business checks to Wachovia bank written on business accounts owned by Tieu at other local Houston banks which did not have sufficient funds to cover the amount of any of the checks presented. These checks were then cashed with the assistance of co-defendant Robbins. 

In custody since his bond was revoked earlier this year, Tieu will remain in custody pending transfer to a Bureau of Prisons facility to be designated in the near future.

Robbins pleaded guilty in May 2010 for his role in the scheme. Judge Hittner sentenced Robbin to 51 months incarceration on March 22, 2011.

The investigation leading to the charges was conducted by the FBI. Assistant United States Attorneys Vernon Lewis and Carolyn Ferko prosecuted the case. 

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