Greenville Woman Pleads Guilty to a Mail Theft Conspiracy
Columbia, South Carolina ---- United States Attorney Sherri A. Lydon stated today that Julie A. Nelson, age 42, of Greenville, pled guilty in federal court in Greenville, to a conspiracy to defraud, a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371. United States District Judge Bruce Howe Hendricks, of Charleston, accepted the 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 Nelson and co-conspirator Julie K. McDowell, who has pled and is awaiting sentencing, stole mail throughout the upstate of South Carolina. Nelson and McDowell altered checks stolen from the mail and also created counterfeit checks from the information obtained. Nelson and McDowell then went to various business in the upstate to pass the checks and obtain goods or cash. Often they used the stolen identification documents to aid in the negotiation of the checks. Law enforcement was able to identify McDowell and Nelson after obtaining surveillance video from various merchants and banks where the two conspirators cashed checks. Upon making arrests, law enforcement recovered approximately $40,000 in stolen checks and $80,000 in counterfeit checks.
Ms. Lydon stated the maximum penalty Nelson can receive is a fine of $250,000 and/or imprisonment for 5 years, supervised release of three years, plus a special assessment of $100.
The case was investigated by agents with the United States Postal Inspection Service, the United States Secret Service, the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office, the Greenville City Police Department, the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office, and the Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Bill Watkins of the Greenville office handled the case.