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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Carolina

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Spartanburg Man Pleads Guilty to Treasury Check Conspiracy

Contact Person: Bill Watkins (864) 282-2100

Columbia, South Carolina ---- Acting United States Attorney Beth Drake stated today that Joshua A. Martin, age 29, of Spartanburg, pled guilty yesterday in federal court in Anderson, to conspiracy to pass Treasury checks of the United States bearing falsely made or forged endorsements, a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371.  United States District Judge Timothy M. Cain, of Anderson accepted the plea and will impose sentence after he 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 Martin and co-defendant Brandy Page (who has already pled guilty) obtained Treasury checks by filing false tax returns and from other sources.  They then would create a fraudulent power of attorney form giving them authority to cash the check that falsely purported to be executed by the payee listed on the Treasury check.  Law enforcement estimates that the duo cashed over $200,000 in Treasury checks in this manner before her scheme was discovered.

Law enforcement discovered the scheme in March 2014 when the Greer Police Department received a complaint from a Georgia man that someone had stolen and cashed his Treasury check in the Greer Wal-Mart.  The driver’s license number and date of birth written on the check came back to Page.  The Internal Revenue Service assisted local authorities and uncovered the breadth of Page’s scheme.

Ms. Drake stated the maximum penalty Martin can receive is a fine of $250,000 and/or imprisonment for 5 years, plus a special assessment of $100.

The case was investigated by agents of the Greer Police Department and the Internal Revenue Service.  Assistant United States Attorney Bill Watkins of the Greenville office handled the case.


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Updated September 28, 2016