The scheme worked, until it didn't.
The scheme worked, until it didn't.

Voncil Felder & Netfa Lowe: Their Debit-Card Fraud Scheme Was All in the Timing

The modus operandi of Voncil Felder, 23, and Netfa Lowe, 34, in their scheme to use debit cards to defraud Chase banks was simple enough, but it required some good timing.

The two -- along with other defendants -- would recruit and pay people to apply for debit cards. They then, prosecutors say:

inserted fraudulent, valueless checks into the bank accounts via ATMs. Once the fraudulent checks had been credited to the accounts, [defendants] would make withdrawals and large ticket electronic item purchases at Walmart stores based on the funds supplied via the deposits of the fraudulent checks. The Lowes stored the large ticket items in U-Haul vans that Felder helped to rent until they could return the items for cash.

That's a whole lot of "beat the bank" in terms of timing.

They'd use some of the cash to go recruit new card applicants, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

The USAO provided no estimate of the amount swindled by the defendants.

Felder was sentenced today to 27 months in prison and Lowe to seven years, prosecutors say. Three others involved in the scheme who have pleaded guilty will be sentenced in May or June.

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