Buffalo Woman Pleads Guilty to Bank Fraud
BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that Nichole Dean, 27, of Buffalo, N.Y., pleaded guilty to bank fraud before U.S. Magistrate Judge Leslie G. Foschio. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison, a fine of $1,000,000 or both.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Russell T. Ippolito, Jr., who is handling the case, stated that the defendant was part of a conspiracy to defraud local area banks by participating in a scheme sometimes referred to as “Check Kiting.” Dean would open bank accounts and deposit large checks to the accounts. The deposited checks were written on accounts that had insufficient funds or on accounts that had been closed. Before the banks could determine that the checks were not supported by any funds, the defendant withdrew smaller amounts from the accounts. Although Dean made away with $7,612.73, the amount of the intended loss was more than $36,000.
Co-conspirators Carlique Deberry, Sade Heath and Sayonara Heath have all been convicted of similar charges.
The plea is the culmination of an investigation by the United States Secret Service, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Tracy Gast.Sentencing will take place at a later date before Chief U.S. District Judge William M. Skretny.