|Wood County indicts 19 on charges involving corrupt activity|
|Written by BILL RYAN/Sentinel Staff Writer|
|Thursday, 06 June 2013 16:50|
A Wood County grand jury has indicted 19 individuals, mostly with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, first-degree felonies.
Det. Sgt. James Gross of the Perrysburg Township Police said 11 of the 19 individuals were arrested on Thursday with the other eight still being sought.
“This is an ongoing investigation,” Gross said at a press conference this morning.
The charges involve an ongoing criminal ring of activity dating to November 2011. Gross indicated the total losses “are easily into the six figures.”
According to court records, there were 47 documented incidents of criminal activity dating back to Nov. 1, 2011.
Much of the criminal activity involved the “skimming” of credit cards which had been used legitimately at Taco Bell in Maumee and at the Toledo Zoo. Skimming involves procuring the credit card information from a regular transaction without the credit card holder’s knowledge. The illegally obtained details of the credit card are then used fraudulently for other goods or services. There is equipment which can transfer that information to a “vanilla” or cloned credit card which can be used like the original card.
At the press conference Gross showed a “Cloned Wars” sign used in an animated series related to “Star Wars,” to indicate an unofficial name for the case.
Gross said of the ongoing investigation that three search warrants were obtained and executed on Thursday as part of the sweep in arresting the suspects.
“Additional evidence in this ongoing criminal enterprise was obtained,” he said.
He declined to provide many details due to the ongoing investigation for more defendants and evidence.
In addition to stolen and cloned credit cards, Gross said the crime spree includes retail fraud and retail theft, often involving construction stores and items.
The indictments also include the possible forfeiture of more than $1,000 in cash, a bill counter and six vehicles. Those vehicles as listed are a 2005 Dodge 2500, a 2006 Dodge Magnum, a 2003 Dodge Ram, a 2006 Honda Ridgeline, a 2004 Cadillac DHS and a 2006 Ford Econoline.
In addition to the numerous incidents of skimming and use of those credit cards primarily in Wood and Lucas counties, there were also incidents of items being stolen from stores, and use of store gift cards obtained from returning stolen merchandise to stores without a receipt. Some of the charges involve drug possession of heroin and money laundering.
Two people were indicted with possession of heroin and two others were charged with the laundering.
Leon “Fruitloop” Jackson Jr., 48, the owner of Big Boy Construction for which Jackson allegedly purchased roofing materials and other items with merchandise cards received from no-receipt returns made by another co-defendant. On another occasion he is alleged to have used three cards to purchase construction materials. Those allegations comprise part of the money laundering charge.
The indictments note suspicious fires at three of the defendants residences with repair work done by GM Harris Builders, LLC, the business operated by Gregory Harris, 55, and his son, Gregory Harris Jr., 28. The elder Harris is also facing a money laundering charge.
The indictments were a culmination of extensive work by the Perrysburg Township Police with the assistance of the U.S. Marshal Northern Ohio Fugitive Task Force along with personnel from City of Perrysburg Police, Holland Police, Maumee Police, Sylvania Police, and the U.S. Secret Service.
Of the 19 indicted, 18 were charged with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, including Jeremy Michael Sims, 33, of Perrysburg. The lone individual not facing that charge was Timothy Richard Derby, 45, also of Perrysburg, who was indicted for receiving stolen property, in regard to more than $1,000 worth of floor tile from Home Depot in Rossford on Nov. 1, 2011. His charge is a fifth-degree felony.
The other 17 defendants were all listed with a Toledo address.
While primarily based in Wood and Lucas counties, Gross said the criminal activity has extended to Lima, Piqua and Columbus, as well as to Fort Wayne, Ind. and into Michigan.
Heather Baker, an assistant county prosecutor, is leading the prosecution of this case.
The cases have all been assigned to Wood County Common Pleas Court Judge Robert Pollex.
The following individuals were indicted as co-defendants in the criminal ring on Wednesday by a Wood County Grand jury.
• Gregory M. Harris, 55, and Leon “Fruitloop” Jackson Jr., 48, both of Toledo, for engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and money laundering.
.• Pierre Thomas Cunningham, 58, and Otha Willis Randall, both of Toledo, engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and possession of heroin.
• The following 16 people, all of Toledo except as noted, each with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity: Jessica M. Sanchez, 24; Amber S. Jones, 22; Ashley D. Jones, 27; Otha W. Randall, 18; Jacqueline Renee McGhee, 30; Curtis Lee Anderson Jr., 52; Cletus Graham Anderson, 48; Frankie Lee Rayford, 55; Frankie Lee Rayford Jr., 33; Jeremy Michael Sims, 33, of Perrysburg; Jamaine Rayshaun Williams, 32; Anastasha Joy White, 27; and Cassandra Hall, 46.
• Timothy Richard Derby, 45, of Perrysburg, was indicted for receiving stolen property.
|Last Updated on Friday, 07 June 2013 13:46|
Front Page Stories
|Elmwood hires firm to design band room
04/15/2014 | MARIE THOMAS BAIRD Sentinel Education Editor
File photo. Elmwood High School students fill the band room during practice. (Photo: J.D [ ... ]
|Rossford to vote on ditching TARTA|
04/15/2014 | DAVID DUPONT Sentinel Staff Writer
ROSSFORD - Barring any intervening legal action, Rossford residents will get a chance [ ... ]