Houston Man Accused Of Stealing From UK-based Company
HOUSTON - Federal charges have been filed against Avery Lamarr Ayers, 48, of Houston, alleging he committed wire fraud by deceiving a foreign company into sending him more than $350,000 to which he was entitled, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today.
The indictment was returned under seal yesterday and unsealed today upon his arrest. He is expected to make his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Stephen Wm. Smith tomorrow at 10:00 a.m.
According to the allegations in the indictment, from approximately Nov. 21, 2014, through March 9, 2015, Ayers deceived a United Kingdom based company - Impact Oil and Gas - into sending him $357,000 for a purported contractual agreement. Ayers allegedly reported to be a representative of Minas & Hidrocarbonetos-GB SARL, the legitimate company that was owed the funds from Impact Oil and Gas. The indictment alleges Ayers deceived the company and caused them to wire the $357,000 to Ayers’ Comerica Bank account here in Houston.
If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison and a possible $250,000 maximum fine.
The investigation leading up to the arrest was conducted by Homeland Security Investigations - Asset Identification and Removal Group. Assistant U.S. Attorney Suzanne Elmilady is prosecuting this case.
An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.