Houston Man Convicted In Houston Theft And Fraud Ring
HOUSTON – Jason Wade Crawford, 37, has entered a plea of guilty to one count each of bank fraud, access device fraud and aggravated identity theft, announced United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson.
According to information presented in open court, beginning in at least May 2012, Crawford broke into several mail boxes throughout the Houston area to steal mail, much of which included checks, credit cards, gift cards and other mail with personal identifiers. He then created false identifications and used them to deposit or cash the checks.
Bank surveillance photos showed Crawford negotiating stolen checks at Woodforest National Bank and Amegy Bank. Local area law enforcement officers were also able to seize bags full of stolen mail from Crawford’s car.
At the time of his guilty plea, he admitted he participated in the mail theft ring and had used the personal identification information of another person to cash stolen checks.
U.S. District David Hittner, who accepted the plea, has set Crawford’s sentencing for Aug. 1, 2014. At that time, he faces up 30 years in federal prison and a possible $1 million fine for the bank fraud, while access device fraud carries a possible punishment of up to 10 years and a maximum $250,000 fine. In addition, with the conviction of identity theft, Crawford will also be required to serve a mandatory two-year prison term which must be served consecutively to any other sentence imposed.
Crawford will remain in custody pending that hearing.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. Assistant U.S. Attorney Julie Searle is prosecuting.