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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Georgia

Friday, December 12, 2014

Credit Card Fraud Results In 15 Year Sentence

ATLANTA - Paul L. Black, a/k/a Marcus Lively and Ednecdia Sutina Johnson, a/k/a Tina Johnson have both been sentenced to 15 years in prison for access device fraud, possession of device-making equipment, possession of false identification documents, and possession of a document-making implement.

“This case demonstrates that so-called white collar crime can also give rise to incredible violence,” said United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates.  “This credit card lab and large volume of account numbers is a reflection of the increasingly sophisticated tools of identity thieves.”

“The defendants endeavored to use technology to their benefit and others’ detriment,” said Reginald G. Moore, Special Agent in Charge of the United States Secret Service, Atlanta Field Office, “This case illustrates that there are no victimless crimes and the sentences prove that those who commit crimes will be put behind bars.”

According to United States Attorney Yates, the charges and other information presented in court: Early in the morning of December 21, 2011, Clayton County officers responded to a 911 call reporting a home invasion at the residence of the defendants.  When they arrived at the scene, officers found one of the presumed home invaders at the foot of the driveway with a bullet wound to his head.  The officers also found the front door of the house kicked in and saw a sawed-off pump shotgun in a large pool of blood in the foyer.  Blood was also on the columns in the foyer and the walls had multiple bullet holes. 

The responding officers searched the house where they found more blood in the master bedroom, including on both doors and at the foot of the bed. The bedroom door also had been shot by a shotgun and the door that led from the bedroom to the backyard was also smeared with blood. The officers moved to the basement, where they discovered a trail of blood leading to a locked door that had blood smeared on its handle.  Officers forced the door open and when they entered the room they found a highly sophisticated credit card lab that contained credit card presses, computers, printers, card embossers, stacks of blank credit cards and partially completed cards, cash, and two handguns. 

Ultimately, the United States Secret Service determined that the lab had over 97,000 unique credit and debit card account numbers, over 800 completed fraudulent credit cards, and about 100 fake IDs.  They also found $199,000 in cash, over $380,000 in jewelry, and gift cards worth more than $43,000.

Paul L. Black and Ednecdia Sutina Johnson lived alone at the house.  As a result of the discovery of the credit card lab, fraudulent credit cards, and fake IDs, Black and Johnson were indicted by a federal grand jury in a four count indictment charging access device fraud, that is possession of counterfeit credit cards, possession of device-making equipment, the credit card making machines, possession of false identification documents, and possession of document-making implements.  At the time of their arrest, Johnson was on supervised release relating to her earlier conviction for federal bank fraud.

Black, 48, of Jonesboro, Ga., has been sentenced by United States District Court Judge Richard Story to 15 years in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release.  Black was convicted on these charges on March 18, 2014, after he pleaded guilty.  Johnson, 48, also of Jonesboro, Ga., has been sentenced to 15 years in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release.  Johnson was convicted on these charges on March 18, 2014, after she pleaded guilty.

This case was investigated by the United States Secret Service.

Assistant United States Attorney Christopher J. Huber prosecuted the case.

For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016.  The Internet address for the home page for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia Atlanta Division is http://www.justice.gov/usao/gan/.

Updated April 8, 2015