Two Men From North Carolina and Georgia Charged With Scheme To Fraudulently Inflate Credit Scores
The defendants paid an insider at TransUnion to doctor their scores and those of their clients
PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Ashante Richardson, 46, of Lawrenceville, GA, and Frank Crosson, 50, of Greensboro, NC, were arrested and charged by Indictment with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and multiple counts of wire fraud in connection with a scheme to fraudulently alter numerous individuals’ credit scores in order to obtain loans and credit.
According to the Indictment, which was unsealed in conjunction with the defendants’ initial appearances in federal court on these charges today, from about September until December 2016, the defendants conspired with another individual to alter the credit histories of themselves and their clients in order to falsely improve those individuals’ chances of securing credit and loans from financial institutions. At the time of the charged conduct, the defendants’ co-conspirator was an employee of TransUnion, one of the three primary consumer credit reporting agencies in the United States. Richardson and Crosson allegedly paid this individual $40,000 in exchange for making unauthorized and unsupported alterations to individuals’ TransUnion credit histories, including the credit histories of clients of Perpetual Synergy, a credit repair business operated by Richardson. Shortly after the co-conspirator at TransUnion made the alterations to these individuals’ credit histories, many of those individuals credit scores increased and they obtained new credit cards, lines of credit, or bank loans.
“The defendants allegedly cheated our national system of credit reporting in order to bolster their scores and those of their clients,” said U.S. Attorney Williams. “Criminals that conduct schemes like this prey on the hard work and honesty of all American consumers who operate within the system to build their credit histories. Our Office will continue to investigate and prosecute financial fraud to protect the integrity of the markets and commerce.”
If convicted the defendants faces a maximum possible sentence of 180 years in prison, three years of supervised release, a $2,250,000 fine, and a $900 special assessment.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney K.T. Newton.