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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, August 23, 2018

Federal Jury Convicts Hope Mills And Fayetteville Residents for Bank Fraud

NEW BERN – The United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, Robert J. Higdon, Jr., announced that yesterday, AMONI BROWN, 20, of Hope Mills, NC, and DONNELL MARIO BRATTON, 38, of Fayetteville, NC, were convicted following a three-day jury trial before United States District Judge Louise W. Flanagan.  The jury found BROWN guilty of one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and two counts of bank fraud and aiding and abetting.  The jury found BRATTON guilty of one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and five counts of bank fraud and aiding and abetting. 

The evidence at trial showed that in September 2016, BROWN and a co-conspirator deposited over $6,700.00 in stolen and altered checks into BROWN’s bank account and subsequently withdrew approximately $3,900.00 from the account.  Similarly, the evidence showed that in January 2017, over a three week period, BRATTON and a co-conspirator, deposited over $47,000.00 in stolen and altered checks into BRATTON’s bank account and subsequently withdrew or attempted to withdraw over $37,000.00 from the account.   

The sentencing hearings for BROWN and BRATTON are tentatively set for the December 2018 term of court.  The statutory maximum penalties for each count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and bank fraud are the same: 30 years imprisonment, a $1,000,000 fine, and 5 years supervised release.  At the time of sentencing, the actual sentence received will be calculated according to the federal sentencing guidelines and imposed by the United States District Judge.

The investigation of this case was conducted by the United States Postal Inspection Service.  Assistant United States Attorneys Melissa Kessler and Felice McConnell Corpening represented the government in this case.

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Updated August 23, 2018