Florence Resident Admits to Conspiring to Defraud
Columbia, South Carolina ---- United States Attorney Beth Drake stated today that Eric Wilson, of Florence, South Carolina, entered a guilty plea in federal court in Columbia, to conspiracy to commit wire, mail, or bank fraud, a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1349. United States District Judge Mary Geiger Lewis, of Columbia, accepted the guilty plea and will impose sentence after she has reviewed the presentence report which will be prepared by the U.S. Probation Office.
Evidence presented at the change of plea hearing established that the U.S. Secret Service began investigating Wilson when it received a tip that he was selling counterfeit checks in Florence. A confidential informant was used to purchase counterfeit checks from Wilson in 2013 and 2014. An examination of the checks revealed that they were connected to an ongoing investigation involving $20,000,000 in losses being investigated by the New York Field Office of the Secret Service since 2007. The counterfeit checks were mailed to Wilson and others throughout the United States then either spent or sold.
Ms. Drake stated the maximum penalty for conspiracy to commit mail, wire or financial fraud is imprisonment for up to thirty years, a one million dollar fine and five years’ supervised release.
The case was investigated by agents of the Florence Police Department and the United States Secret Service. Assistant United States Attorney William E. Day, II, of the Columbia office is prosecuting the case.