Fraud Scheme Doesn't End Well for National Guardsman from Houston
A plan to scheme the U.S. Army National Guard flopped.
Photo by Sgt. Melissa Bright/dvidshub.net
A scheme to make away with sign-up incentives offered by the local National Guard Bureau probably seemed bulletproof at first. Christopher Renfro, a 26-year-old Houstonian, would get the names of people who wanted to be soldiers and add them to his referral list. He'd already set up the online account that would drop bonus money into his bank account.
It seemed to work out fine for a while; he was doing what was required to get $2,000 a pop in bonus pay under the G-Rap program, according to court documents. The Guard Recruiting Assistance Program had kicked off sometime in 2005, and between 2008 and 2011, Renfro had entered into the scheme, which included 25 other people from the Houston area and San Antonio.
But Renfro, a former Army specialist, pleaded guilty on Wednesday to two counts of wire fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft. He'd already admitted to a conspiracy and bribery charge in the scheme in March.
His role in the crime was connected with former Sergeant First Class Michael Rambaran, whom he paid for the info on potential soldiers. Rambaran pleaded guilty in March to one count of conspiracy, one county of bribery and one county of aggravated identity theft, according to a statement from the Department of Justice.
Both men will be sentenced in January.
Get the ICYMI: Today's Top Stories Newsletter
Catch up on the day's news and stay informed with our daily digest of the most popular news, music, food and arts stories in Houston, delivered to your inbox Monday through Friday.