LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Two men accused of stealing checks, credit cards and other items from local mailboxes using counterfeit U.S. Postal Service keys, are scheduled to be arraigned by a federal magistrate judge this afternoon, announced Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada.
Derrick F. Hutson, 42, and Marshal R. Stapleton, 27, both of Las Vegas, are scheduled to appear at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 16, 2013, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert A. McQuaid, Jr. They are charged with conspiracy, possession of stolen mail and unauthorized possession of counterfeit U.S. Postal Service keys.
According to the criminal complaint dated April 23, 2013, United States Postal Service employees recently received reports of several incidents of mail theft in the Summerlin and Northwest areas of Las Vegas. The reports indicated that entire contents of mailboxes had been removed from cluster-type mailboxes, but that no damage had occurred to the mailboxes indicating the use of a counterfeit key. Following an investigation by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Hutson and Stapleton were apprehended on April 15, 2013, at approximately 2:20 a.m. while they were sitting in a vehicle parked next to a cluster mail box in a Summerlin-area community. Postal Inspectors recovered from the vehicle counterfeit U.S. Postal Service keys and burglary tools. Postal Inspectors later recovered from their homes, stolen U.S. Postal Service mailbox locks and parts, counterfeit keys, counterfeit identity documents, credit card manufacturing devices, check software, and stolen mail.
The criminal indictment charges that between January and April 23, 2013, Hutson and Stapleton made and possessed counterfeit U.S. Post Office keys which they used to steal checks, gift cards, debit cards, credit cards, and other items from mailboxes in Las Vegas.
If convicted, Hutson and Stapleton face up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine on the conspiracy and stolen mail charges and up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine on the counterfeit key charges. They are currently in federal custody pending their arraignment tomorrow.
The case is being investigated by the United States Postal Inspection Service and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian Pugh.
Today’s announcement is part of efforts underway by President Obama’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force (FFETF) which was created in November 2009 to wage an aggressive, coordinated and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. attorneys’ offices and state and local partners, it’s the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud. Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions and other organizations. Over the past three fiscal years, the Justice Department has filed more than 10,000 financial fraud cases against nearly 15,000 defendants including more than 2,700 mortgage fraud defendants. For more information on the task force, visit www.stopfraud.gov