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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, March 15, 2018

Three men indicted for conspiracy involving passing $20,000 worth of counterfeit $50 bills at dozens of stores across Northeast Ohio

Three men were indicted in federal court for their roles in a counterfeiting conspiracy in which they passed more than $20,000 in counterfeit currency in nearly three dozen stores throughout Northeast Ohio, U.S. Attorney Justin E. Herdman said.

Named in the eight-count indictment are Labrawn Revelle Gullatt, Jr., 23, of Euclid; Yul Ardon Martin, Jr., 39 and Meco L. Shaw, 22, both of Cleveland.

“These defendants are accused of stealing tens of thousands of dollars from stores across Northeast Ohio,” Herdman said. “Whether it was buying merchandise from large stores, making relatively small purchases in an effort to get change or buy debit cards with fake cash, they broke the law and will now be held accountable for their actions.”

Gullat, Martin and Shaw conspired together between April 2017 through February 2018 to use counterfeit $50 bills to purchase merchandise from locations including Walmart in Sandusky, Mansfield and Cleveland, Home Depots in Highland Heights, Mentor and Euclid and Babies R Us in Mentor, according to the indictment.

They also made or attempted to make relatively small purchases with the counterfeit $50 bills, including a milkshake from Arby’s in Mentor and a sandwich from Chick-fil-A in Willoughy, according to the indictment.

They also made purchases in January 2018 with the counterfeit $50 bills from several stores in Aurora, including Adidas, Calvin Klein and Home Depot, a Dick’s Sporting Goods in Bainbridge. They also purchased or attempted to purchase several Master Card and American Express gift cards and debit cards using the counterfeit $50 bills, according to the indictment.

Keith Abrams, 42, of Cleveland, was indicted for passing $1,000 worth of counterfeit $50 bills at a Gap Store in Westlake on Nov. 21, 2017, according to the indictment

Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian S. Deckert is prosecuting the case following an investigation by the U.S. Secret Service.

If convicted, the defendants’ sentence will be determined by the court after review of factors unique to this case, including the defendants’ prior criminal record, if any, the defendants’ role in the offense, and the characteristics of the violation.  In all cases, the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Component(s): 
Contact: 
Mike Tobin 216.622.3651 michael.tobin@usdoj.gov
Updated March 15, 2018