PROVIDENCE, R.I. – A Providence man who led a counterfeit check scheme that defrauded banks of tens of thousands of dollars has been sentenced to five years in federal prison, announced United States Attorney Zachary A. Cunha.
Terrance Richardson, 30, pleaded guilty on March 24, 2022, to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and twelve counts of bank fraud.
At the time of his guilty plea, Richardson admitted that beginning in as early as April 2020, he conspired with others to create and deposit counterfeit checks drawn on the accounts of actual businesses. The counterfeit checks were typically deposited into the accounts of individuals who agreed to participate in the conspiracy in exchange for a cash payment. Many of those individuals were solicited through Facebook.
In many instances, soon after the counterfeit checks were deposited, the proceeds were quicky withdrawn from ATMs before banks could determine that the checks were fraudulent. Banks deemed some of the checks to be fraudulent prior to any money being withdrawn.
At sentencing on Friday, U.S. District Court Chief Judge John J. McConnell, Jr., sentenced Richardson to sixty months in federal prison to be followed by three years of federal supervised release. Ricardson was ordered to pay restitution to banks totaling $83,296.51, representing the actual loss to banks as a result of his criminal conduct.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ly T. Chin.
The matter was investigated by the United States Postal Inspection Service, with the assistance of the FBI, United States Secret Service, Rhode Island State Police, and the Providence and Bethel CT, Police Departments.