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Press Release

Second Georgia Man Pleads Guilty to Check Cashing Scheme

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of New York

ALBANY, NEW YORK – Javonte J. Johnson, age 22, of Decatur, Georgia, pled guilty today to creating counterfeit checks and then cashing them at banks in Saratoga and Warren Counties.

The announcement was made by United States Attorney Grant C. Jaquith; James N. Hendricks, Special Agent in Charge of the Albany Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI); and New York State Police Superintendent Keith M. Corlett.

Johnson pled guilty to one count of conspiring to commit bank fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft. 

Johnson admitted that he and co-conspirators, including Alphonso L. Howard, Jr., defrauded financial institutions by intercepting and stealing checks sent through the U.S. Mail; using information from these legitimate checks to create counterfeit checks drawn on the same financial accounts as the stolen, legitimate checks; and then cashing and attempting to cash the counterfeit checks at financial institutions in Saratoga and Warren Counties.  Johnson agreed that he caused $164,077.70 in losses. 

Johnson, who has been in custody since New York State Police arrested him on September 26, 2018, will be sentenced on October 29, 2019.  He faces at least 2 years and up to 30 years in prison, a maximum $1 million fine, and up to 5 years of post-release supervision.  A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other factors. 

On April 9, 2019, Howard, age 28, of Decatur, Georgia, pled guilty to one count of conspiring to commit bank fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft.  He is scheduled to be sentenced on August 13, 2019.

This case was investigated by the FBI and the New York State Police-Troop G, and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Barnett.  Other agencies have assisted in the investigation and prosecution, including the District Attorney’s Offices in Jefferson, Saratoga and Warren Counties, the Glens Falls Police Department, the Burlington Police Department (Vt.), Vermont State Police, and the Stowe Police Department (Vt.).

Updated July 3, 2019

Financial Fraud
Identity Theft