Brooklyn Man Sentenced To Life For Murder To Obstruct Bank Fraud Investigation
This afternoon, Naquan Reyes was sentenced to life imprisonment by United States District Judge Sandra L. Townes at the federal courthouse in Brooklyn, based on his conviction for murdering Nicole Thompson. Judge Townes also imposed a forfeiture judgment in the amount of $184,000. According to court filings, and as admitted by Reyes during his guilty plea, Reyes paid another individual to murder Ms. Thompson to prevent her from cooperating with law enforcement and undermining a lucrative and long-standing scheme to defraud banks in the New York area.
The plea was announced by Robert L. Capers, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York; Diego G. Rodriguez, Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI); and David E. Beach, Special Agent-in-Charge, United States Secret Service, New York Field Office.
As alleged in the government’s sentencing memorandum, between 2008 and his arrest in 2014, Reyes perpetrated a scheme to defraud various banks of more than $800,000. As part of the scheme, Reyes secured employment at more than half a dozen banks and, relying in part on knowledge he acquired from his employment, Reyes created counterfeit checks and recruited others to deposit those checks into their and others’ bank accounts. Reyes and his coconspirators then attempted to withdraw the funds from the bank accounts before the banks learned the checks were counterfeit. Among those he recruited to make the deposits was Nicole Thompson. On July 16, 2010, Thompson was arrested by the New York City Police Department in connection with her role in the scheme, and she immediately decided to cooperate with law enforcement. When Reyes learned of Thompson’s plans to cooperate, and thereby jeopardize his ongoing fraud scheme, Reyes paid another individual to murder her and then traveled from New York to Maryland to personally dispose of her body. On July 24, 2010, Thompson’s body, duct taped and wrapped in garbage bags, was found in a dumpster in Landover, Maryland. Thompson was 24 years old at the time of her murder. Reyes later brazenly commented that he would “do it again if [his] life was on the line. It was either me or her.” After his arrest, rather than accept full responsibility for his crimes, Reyes tried to persuade an ex-girlfriend to lie to law enforcement in an apparent attempt to receive credit for purported cooperation.
Mr. Capers expressed his grateful appreciation to the Prince George’s County, Maryland Police Department, New York City Police Department, and Bronx County District Attorney’s Office for their significant cooperation and assistance in the investigation.
The government’s case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Elizabeth Kramer, Elizabeth Geddes, Samuel Nitze and Karin Orenstein.
E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 14-CR-0227