A Pennsylvania criminal defendant who had been released on his own recognizance pending the outcome of a criminal trial is once again in custody. The man, age 28, had been ordered to stay in Western Pennsylvania by a judge after he was accused of several federal crimes. The man allegedly defrauded computer buyers and banks. He was arrested in late February in Arizona after allegedly disobeying the judge's orders and traveling throughout the nation.
The man was awaiting trial for federal crimes including bank embezzlement and mail fraud. He allegedly moved more than $2 million from bank customers' holdings into his own accounts. He was also accused of defrauding customers who made purchases from him through online sales sites.
Federal prosecutors say that the new charges could damage the man's credibility. He is accused of receiving massive shipments of counterfeit money from overseas. Officials say that counterfeiting is a serious crime that has garnered increased attention from the federal government in recent years; false money can have a significant impact on the health of the economy, and it can even pay for other crimes.
Video footage from throughout the area shows that the man may have used counterfeit $100 bills to make several purchases throughout the area in December and January. Investigators say they also discovered a package of counterfeit bills that had been sent to a location that was associated with the defendant.
Criminal defendants who are facing several federal offenses at once may benefit from consulting a Pennsylvania attorney. These professionals can explain the implications of additional criminal offenses upon sentencing guidelines and other courtroom factors. A Pennsylvania attorney can educate defendants about their legal rights and options.
Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, "Former bank official arrested in Arizona on counterfeit charge" Rich Lord, Feb. 28, 2014