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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Member of Fraudulent Check Cashing Ring Sentenced

ATLANTA - Ryan Sylvestre, a/k/a Fly, a/k/a Nature has been sentenced to three years, nine months in prison after a jury convicted him of bank fraud conspiracy, bank fraud, and aggravated identity theft stemming from his role in a scheme that stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from banks across the Southeast. 

“Sylvestre and his co-conspirators stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from numerous bank accounts across the Southeast,” said U. S. Attorney John Horn.  “His elaborate scheme reinforces that identity thieves will go to almost any length to enrich themselves at the expense of their victims.”

“Bank fraud is not a victimless crime and the FBI will continue to dedicate significant investigative resources toward investigating and presenting for prosecution those who would engage in such criminal activities.  The FBI is proud of the role that it played in the sentencing of Ryan Sylvestre, which removes a key crime figure from our streets,” said J. Britt Johnson, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Atlanta Field Office.

“Bank fraud is one of the largest challenges facing financial institutions today,” said Malcolm D. Wiley, Sr., Acting Special Agent in Charge of the United States Secret Service, Atlanta Field Office.  “The Unites States Secret Service will continue to collaborate with its law enforcement partners to target and arrest individuals who violate the trust the public has in our economic system.  This sentence should serve as a reminder that criminals will bear the consequences of their actions and be sent to prison for their crimes.”

According to U.S. Attorney Horn, the charges and other information presented in court: In 2013, Sylvestre, along with co-conspirators Richaad T. Mason, a.k.a. “Cap,” Carley Carpenter, and April M. Hayes, stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from SunTrust, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo bank accounts.  After obtaining counterfeit checks that contained the confidential account information of customers at the three banking institutions, this group recruited individuals to cash the counterfeit and forged checks. 

Sylvestre personally recruited women to cash forged checks.  The checks were written out in the names of the recruited check cashers.  The crew was responsible for cashing checks at various banks in Georgia, Virginia, North Carolina, and Florida, among other places.  On multiple occasions, Sylvestre picked up the check cashers from their homes, gave them forged and counterfeit checks, drove them to the bank, and collected the proceeds.  He also permitted his co-conspirators to use his rental car to cash checks in Savannah, Georgia and Virginia. 

Other co-conspirators, some of whom await sentencing, include:

  • Richaad T. Mason, a.k.a. “Cap,” 24, or Atlanta, Georgia, who pleaded guilty to aggravated identity theft and bank fraud conspiracy on June 15, 2015.

  • Carley T. Carpenter, 26, of Atlanta, Georgia, who pleaded guilty to bank fraud conspiracy on September 18, 2015.

  • April M. Hayes, 24, or Braselton, Georgia, who pleaded guilty to aggravated identity theft and bank fraud conspiracy on June 22, 2015.

Ryan Sylvestre, a/k/a Fly, a/k/a Nature, 32, of Atlanta, Georgia, was sentenced to three years, nine months in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release.  He was indicted for bank fraud, conspiracy to commit bank fraud, and aggravated identity theft on October 27, 2015, and found guilty by a jury on December 16, 2015.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and United States Secret Service.

Assistant United States Attorneys Kamal Ghali and Jeffrey W. Davis 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 U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is http://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.

Topic: 
Financial Fraud
Updated March 22, 2016