News and Press Releases

Cypress Husband Sentenced for Counterfeiting $100 Bills

   
Aug. 15, 2012

HOUSTON – Synaca Thomas, 35, of Cypress, Texas, has been handed a nearly 22-year sentence for his role in a scheme involving nearly $500,000 in counterfeit $100 bills and the passing of those bills at Houston area businesses, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Thomas pleaded guilty Jan. 19, 2012, to conspiracy to make and possess counterfeit United States currency as well as illegal possession of a firearm by a felon.

Today, U.S. District Judge Keith P. Ellison sentenced Thomas to 60 months on the conspiracy count and 82 and 120 months, respectively, on the counterfeiting and firearms charges. The sentences will run consecutively for a total prison term of 262 months and will be followed by a three-year-term of supervised release. His punishment was enhanced due to his attempt to introduce contraband into the facility where he was being held pending today’s sentencing. At the hearing, the government outlined that smuggling attempt, in which the contraband was disguised in packaging to appear as M&Ms, as well as his lengthy criminal history and his extensive role in the criminal counterfeiting enterprise. Further evidence was also presented indicating that although Thomas pleaded guilty to a single firearms charge, law enforcement twice found him in illegal possession of a firearm during the investigation of his counterfeiting activities. In handing down the sentence against Thomas, Judge Ellison considered the government’s evidence as well as the amount of currency involved and the severity of his criminal history.

In explaining the sentence, Judge Ellison stated “at every level, there has been an assault on the system,” eluding to the wide range of victims he has affected, including the legal system, victims of the counterfeiting scheme, the criminal justice system and even his own wife. Brittany Jordan, his 26-year-old wife, also of Cypress, previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to make counterfeit United States currency as well as one substantive count of passing counterfeit currency will be sentenced at a later date. 

Thomas and Jordan admitted they conspired to make counterfeit United States currency between January 2009 and January 2011. Thomas and Jordan obtained genuine $5 bills that they reprinted as counterfeit $100 bills. During the course of the conspiracy, Thomas and Jordan made and passed approximately $500,000 in counterfeit currency to Houston area retailers including grocery and computer stores and tanning salons. 

Thomas has been in custody where he will remain pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future. Jordan has been released on bond pending her sentencing hearing.

The two-year investigation leading to the charges against this couple was conducted by the United States Secret Service with the cooperation and assistance of the Houston and Hedwig Village Police Departments, sheriff’s offices in Harris, Fort Bend and Austin Counties and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorney John D. Jocher is prosecuting the case

 

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