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OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF WEST VIRGINIA

Betsy C. Jividen
UNITED STATES ATTORNEY


1125 Chapline Street, Federal Building, Suite 3000 ● Wheeling, WV 26003
(304) 234-0100 ● Contact: Fawn E. Thomas, Public Affairs Specialist

June 17, 2010
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Three Named in Federal Indictments

ELKINS, WEST VIRGINIA — Three defendants were named in separate Indictments returned by a Federal Grand Jury sitting in Elkins, West Virginia.

United States Attorney Betsy C. Jividen announced that:

JONATHAN EDWARD ACKERMAN, age 24, of Weston, was named in a nine-count Indictment. The Indictment alleges that ACKERMAN devised a scheme to defraud by obtaining personal identifying information of a female person while assisting her with internet access to her online credit reports and using that information to make online applications for credit cards without her knowledge. The Indictment further alleges that ACKERMAN then made unauthorized purchases on an HSBC GM World Card MasterCard (using the information that she gave to him) and cash advances on a Barclays Visa Black card he obtained using personal identifying information without her knowledge. As a result of the scheme, ACKERMAN caused total losses in the approximate value of $42,278.71.

Counts One and Two of the Indictment allege that ACKERMAN committed mail fraud on July 27, 2009, in Lewis County, West Virginia. Count Three of the Indictment alleges that ACKERMAN committed aggravated identity theft on July 27, 2009. Counts Four, Five, Six, Seven, and Eight of the Indictment allege that ACKERMAN committed identity theft. Count Nine of the Indictment alleges that ACKERMAN committed credit card fraud.

If convicted, ACKERMAN faces a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 each on Counts One and Two of the Indictment; a two-year consecutive term of imprisonment on Count Three of the Indictment; a maximum penalty of one year imprisonment and a fine of $100,000 each on Counts Four, Five, Six, Seven, and Eight of the Indictment; and a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 on Count Nine of the Indictment. The case will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Stephen D. Warner. The case was investigated by the United States Postal Inspection Service and the West Virginia State Police.

NATHANIEL MCRAE, age 31, was named in a three-count Indictment. Count One of the Indictment alleges that MCRAE conspired to possess with intent to distribute heroin on July 3, 2009, in Preston County. Count Two of the Indictment alleges that MCRAE, while an inmate in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons at the United States Penitentiary Hazelton, attempted to obtain a controlled substance on July 3, 2009. Count Three of the Indictment alleges that MCRAE used a telephone in the commission of a felony on June 30, 2009. If convicted, MCRAE faces a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment and a fine of $1,000,000 on Count One of the Indictment; a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 on Count Two of the Indictment; and a maximum penalty of four years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 on Count Three of the Indictment. The case will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Sherry L. Muncy. The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the West Virginia States Police, and Special Investigative Services at USP Hazelton.

RICHARD J. SPECIALE, also known as “BIG RICK,” age 48, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, was named in a two-count Indictment. Count One of the Indictment alleges that SPECIALE engaged in a Continuing Criminal Enterprise from June 2007 to January 2010 in the Northern District of West Virginia, the Western District of Pennsylvania, and elsewhere. Count Two of the Indictment alleges that SPECIALE conspired to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine from June 2007 to January 2010. If convicted, SPECIALE faces a maximum penalty of 20 years to life imprisonment on each count and a maximum fine of $2,000,000 on Count One of the Indictment and $8,000,000 on Count Two of the Indictment. The case will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Andrew R. Cogar. The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

It should be noted that the charges contained in the Indictments are merely accusations and not evidence of guilt, and that each defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

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