Five men indicted on multiple charges in mail theft scheme
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Texas
HOUSTON – A federal grand jury sitting in Houston has returned a superseding indictment against five Honduran nationals in a bank fraud conspiracy, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.
Angel Javier Contreras Melara, 44, Bayron Rolando Guzman Yanez, 28, Elvin Lioile Rivas, 22, Hoffman Ramon Osorio Gallardo, 29, and Jonathan Arreaga Camey, 35, are charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud, bank fraud, possession of stolen mail and aggravated identity theft. All but Camey were illegally residing in Houston. Camey is a legal permanent resident of Houston but could lose his status if convicted.
Melara and Rivas are currently in custody. The remaining three were permitted release pending further criminal proceedings. All are expected to appear for their arraignments on the charges in the superseding indictment before a U.S. magistrate judge in the near future.
The 17-count indictment alleges multiple mail thefts throughout the Greater Houston area beginning in mid-2019 and continuing through the end of 2020. The conspirators would allegedly look for checks within the stolen mail and alter them to deposit into accounts the conspirators controlled.
If convicted, the defendants face up to 30 years in prison for the conspiracy and bank fraud counts and five years if convicted of the mail theft. They also face an additional and mandatory two years for the aggravated identity theft counts which must be served consecutively to any other prison term imposed.
The U.S. Postal Inspection Service conducted the investigation with the assistance of police departments in Meadows Place, Houston and Sugar Land. Assistant U.S. Attorney Christine Lu is prosecuting the case.
An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence. A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.
Updated March 24, 2021