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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of California

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Richmond Man Sentenced In Multi-Year Multi-State Bank Fraud And Identity Theft Scheme

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Reginald L. Thomas, 39, of Richmond was sentenced today by Chief United States District Judge Morrison C. England, Jr. to 45 months in prison for Conspiracy to Commit Bank Fraud and Aggravated Identity Theft, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.

According to evidence presented at a December trial, from March 2008 until July 2010, Thomas and co-conspirator Deshawn Ray conducted what was described as a multi-state “account takeover” scheme that targeted high-value accounts at several banks. Members of the conspiracy used the personal information of high-value account holders to open a joint account in the names of the high-value account holders and a co-conspirator. The defendants also changed the contact information for the high-value accounts so that the actual account holders would not receive notice of account activity. The defendants then transferred funds from the high-value accounts to the joint accounts and then to individual accounts held by a member of the conspiracy. Members of the conspiracy withdrew the proceeds of the fraudulent transfers in cash, cashiers’ checks or wire transfers before the transfers were noticed by the banks and reversed.

This case was the product of an investigation by the United States Secret Service, the Pinellas County (Florida) Sheriff’s Office, and the Walnut Creek (California) Police Department.  Assistant United States Attorneys Matthew G. Morris and Brian A. Fogerty are prosecuting the case.

Co-defendant Damian Edgerson, 39, of Oakland, previously pled guilty to bank fraud.  He was sentenced to serve 18 months in prison.  Co-defendant Tiffany Tung, 26, of Oakland pled guilty to Accepting a Bribe as a Bank Employee.  Tung is scheduled to be sentenced in May 2015.  She faces a maximum statutory penalty of 1 year in prison and a $100,000 fine.  Co-defendant Deshawn Ray is scheduled to appear before Chief Judge England on February 12, 2015 for a hearing on the schedule for sentencing.  Ray faces a maximum statutory penalty of 30 years in prison and a $1,000,000 fine for his bank fraud convictions, and a mandatory 2 year consecutive prison term for his conviction for Aggravated Identity Theft.  The actual sentences for both Tung and Ray will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.

Press Release Number: 
Docket #: 2:11-cr-216-MCE
Updated April 8, 2015