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Posted: 12/24/2003 5:34:09 AM EDT
Forgive me for venting, I don't mean to whine and I promise that I am not a rookie. I've been at this for almost 18 years now and I have given the same old speech, "We just catch 'em, we don't cook 'em!" to many a new officer, but this one wrecked my day:

After a 6 month investigation with 100's of hours expended and several trips undercover by both me and my partner, we busted a charity scam artist who had defrauded different people and various corporations out of over $200k PROVEN and we got to her just as she was about to get another estimated $500k, HALF A MILLION $$$!, thank God we stopped it before it happened. She plea bargained on multiple counts of Felony Fraud and the prosecutor said all along that she was going to get nothing less than (2) 5-year sentences to run concurrently. That still sounded lite in my book, but OK I can take that...Then they started talking restitution and the plea bargain got into (2) 5-year sentences with part of the time suspended, (10 years DOC supervision). They went to pre-trial conference 2 weeks ago and she entered guilty pleas to all counts...

ANYWAY, last Monday she went to formal sentencing. (Did I mention that the prosecutor was a newbie, fresh out of law school and nearly young enough to be my son.) That asshole bargained down to 10 years DEFERRED on only $15k in restitution cash-in-hand! Augghh!!!

My supervisor congratulated us on stopping the scam and saving almost half-a-million$, but we could tell that he was just as disgusted with the agreement as anyone else and he has made no bones about the fact that he is not on speaking terms with this prosecutor now. But even as new as the prosecutor is, we know that the agreement had to have been signed-off by another supervising prosecutor. Apparently they don't really take us seriously.

My wife said that I can't let this ruin the holidays and she's right. Thanks for letting me get this off my chest and Merry Christmas.
Link Posted: 12/24/2003 5:43:41 AM EDT
Another example of scam artist rule number one.

Keep 30% of your haul for your lawyer.

This sucks!

Eitherway, thanks for caring.

Tj
Link Posted: 12/24/2003 5:59:31 AM EDT
Had something similar with a guy running an escort service. At the time of his arrest and search warrant he had almost 250K in the trunk of his car in plastic trash bags. All told he made around 2 million in two years running  around 30 hookers.

The only charges the DA wound up prosecuting was the aggravated assault charges that brought him to our attention in the first place.

10 years probation for crippling one of his "employees".   Enough to make you growl.

Seems one of the spectators in the back of the courtroom was an IRS investigator on another case. When he heard what the guy had done,  he came up and asked  us for the particulars.

The Feds put him away for 12 years on tax fraud.  [:D]
Link Posted: 12/24/2003 8:49:50 AM EDT
I think all of us in LE work have had cases like that happen.  

The one that sticks out the most to me is a drunk I had run from me then crash and injure a young girl and then he took off again.  He was taken in custody after a short chase.  So after being charged with felony evading, dwi, and fail to stop and render aid he got 6 fucking months of probation.  Needless to say I was pissed too but justice was served.  My brother, who is also a deputy with the same dept I work for arrested him for dwi shortly after and he got put in jail like he deserved.  

Did I mention I have a great pic of that terd after being pepper sprayed!!!
Link Posted: 12/24/2003 12:11:05 PM EDT
This is going to sound bad, and I never have gone to the news media myself, because I hate them, but, is there one of those consumer protection reporters in our area?

Prosecutors are elected, no?

This case sounds like an emmy award winning one to me.

Use this one with caution, however.  I have not found it necessary to do this in my career, but I have some good friends and relatives who have gotten results through good media contacts.  I just can't bring myself to trust them; or, to trust them with my career, that is.

Merry Christmas, you did your best, what more can the public ask?
Link Posted: 12/24/2003 12:40:30 PM EDT
The tax fraud route previously mentioned is another potential method to get this gal in jail. Although the fed agencies are bogged down with "real" crimes, you know, that terrorism stuff, they may make time for ya.


Just a thought, as I know what ya mean, and I hate to "lose".
Link Posted: 12/28/2003 6:37:18 PM EDT
Im with the poster above, talk to the friendly folks at the IRS.
Somehow I bet they forget to file thier income properly this year.
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