MOUNT PLEASANT, Wis. - A Greenfield man is charged with 87 total counts – including more than 30 that are fraud-related.
According to a criminal complaint, Mount Pleasant police were assigned to investigate a "wide-sweeping" fraud operation allegedly organized by 22-year-old Devontae Cash against Educators Credit Union.
The scheme, the complaint states, is commonly known as "card cracking" – which involves depositing checks using a mobile banking app and immediately withdrawing some funds. When the check is processed, however, it comes back as fraudulent, insufficient funds or "account closed."
The complaint states Cash's scheme had three parts and ran from August 2020 to January 2021:
- Find willing account holders to provide their account information under the guise of earning extra money
- Use the account information to order checks that were then delivered to Cash's home
- Find a second round of willing account holders under the guise of earning extra money and, using their account information, deposit the fraudulent checks and commit the "card cracking" withdrawal
Police got search warrants for two of Cash's social media accounts. On those accounts, he made statements about fraud and "card cracking," the complaint states. Those statements included "advertisements" in which Cash told Educators Credit Union members that they could "get $500-$1,000 instant" cash.
The complaint states messages from Cash allegedly provided a "step-by-step process to commit fraud via CashApp." Messages also showed Cash talking about the Educators Credit Union fraud scheme, saying: "We would have to close (the account) after I mean it's a free 1,000 who cares lol."
In all, Cash is charged with:
- Fraud against a financial institution (23 counts)
- Conspiracy to commit fraud against a financial institution (7 counts)
- Identity theft (3 counts)
- Attempted fraud against a financial institution
- Organizer of financial crimes
- Felony bail jumping (24 counts)
- Misdemeanor bail jumping (28 counts)
The complaint states Cash's scheme involved the work of at least eight other people. The following, court records show, are charged with fraud against a financial institution:
- Deanterrio King, 21
- Ashley Kruszwicki, 24 (also charged with attempted fraud against a financial institution)
- Lauryn Mason, 21
- Abraham Scott, 20
- Kameron Simpson
- Araceli Vazquez, 22
- Alfred Williams, 21
- Demetrius Wilson, 21
Cash made an initial court appearance on June 15, and a judge set bond at $10,000. He waived a preliminary hearing on June 22, pleaded not guilty and was bound over. He is due back in court Aug. 9.