7 indicted in scheme to defraud banks of $1 million

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Seven people are facing charges for allegedly defrauding banks of $1 million, U.S. Attorney Aaron Weisman announced Monday.

Stefan C. Gaye, 27, Edmilson A. Rodrigues, 20, Nestor Concepcion, 23, Luis Rodriguez, 19, Terrell Witherspoon, 23, and Leslie Susana, 20, all of Providence, were indicted Friday on charges of bank fraud and conspiracy for their alleged roles in a “card cracking” scheme. Shaun Davis, 25, of Providence, was charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud.

The scheme consists of recruiting bank account holders to deposit counterfeit checks then use an ATM card to withdraw funds before the bank determines the checks are fake, according to Weisman’s office.

Prosecutors say the group solicited the account holders – often times college students – via social media. To create the phony checks, they appeared to have targeted people with access to legitimate business and public agency checks, which would be photographed and sent to a counterfeiter.

Banks across Rhode Island and Massachusetts were defrauded of approximately $1 million over the past six years, according to prosecutors.

Weisman’s office said Gaye and Witherspoon were arrested and have since been arraigned while arrest warrants are out for Rodrigues and Susana.

Concepcion, Rodriguez and Dennis are currently being held at the ACI on unrelated charges. They’re due in court for arraignment on May 6.

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