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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Illinois

Monday, February 23, 2015

Home Health Worker Sentenced For Defrauding Elderly Patient

A St. Louis, Missouri, resident was sentenced to federal prison for access device fraud and aggravated identity theft on February 20, 2015, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today. Melissa Charlton, originally from Valmeyer, Illinois, was sentenced to 36 months in federal prison, $5,271.69 in restitution, a $200 special assessment and three years of supervised release.

Evidence presented in Court established that Charlton exploited an 82 year old woman from O’Fallon, Ill. Charlton obtained unauthorized access to the victim’s credit cards and her checking account to obtain money and goods valued at more than $5,000. The victim attempted to stop the fraud after she discovered fraudulent credit card purchases, but Charlton also stole her replacement credit cards and misused the victim’s social security number and date of birth to activate the replacement cards. She also used the victim’s personal information to apply for an additional credit card account without the victim’s knowledge or consent.

The investigation was conducted by agents from the US Postal Inspection Service. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Steven D. Weinhoeft.

Updated March 3, 2015