NEW ORLEANS – U.S. Attorney Peter G. Strasser announced that NICHOLAS ROTUNDA ALLEN, age 39, an inmate in Jimmy Autry State Prison in Pelham, Georgia, was charged yesterday in a one-count bill of information with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. ' 371, for his role in perpetrating a grand jury fraud scam and victimizing a resident of the Eastern District of Louisiana.
According to the bill of information, on November 6, 2017, ALLEN used a contraband cellular telephone to contact Victim A from inside the state prison. ALLEN obtained the phone from a non-incarcerated co-conspirator. ALLEN pretended to be a Deputy United States Marshal and informed Victim A that he had unlawfully failed to report for jury duty service for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. ALLEN further told Victim A that because he had failed to appear for jury duty, a warrant had been issued out of the Eastern District of Louisiana for Victim A’s arrest. The individual said that Victim A had the choice of either being arrested on the warrant or paying a $5,500 fine to have the arrest warrant dismissed. Victim A paid the fine by buying a series of pre-paid cash cards and giving the account numbers to ALLEN. Thereafter, Victim A paid ALLEN by buying a total of eleven (11) pre-paid cash cards and giving the cards’ account numbers to ALLEN.
If convicted, ALLEN faces a maximum term of imprisonment of five years, a fine of up to $250,000, three years supervised release after imprisonment, and a mandatory $100 special assessment.
U. S. Attorney Strasser reiterated that a bill of information is merely a charge and that the guilt of the defendant must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
U.S. Attorney Strasser praised the work of the United States Marshal Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Jordan Ginsberg is in charge of the prosecution.