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Federal white collar charges filed against West Michigan suspects

It’s about a two-hour drive due west of Ann Arbor to get to Kalamazoo. The city is home to five people recently arrested on federal white collar crime charges involving allegations of identity theft and credit card fraud in several West Michigan towns.

A spokesperson for the United States Postal Inspection Service alleged that the suspects opened credit cards in the names of victims, had the cards shipped to their homes and then stole the cards from their mail. The cards were then reportedly used at Meijer stores in Kalamazoo, Portage, Battle Creek, Benton Harbor and other towns.

According to a news report, officials began receiving reports six months ago from people who claimed that credit cards had been opened in their names. Officials believe there were about $400,000 in losses.

The suspects named include two women and five men, ranging in age from 24 to 31. All but two are from Kalamazoo, while the others are reportedly from Florida.

All are charged with felony access device fraud, aggravated ID theft, and conspiracy to commit fraud and aggravated identity theft. Two of the men also face felony charges of possession of stolen mail. That federal charge carries with it a possible five-year sentence. Access device fraud can be punished with to 15 years in a federal prison.

Those facing federal charges should speak to an attorney experienced in federal and white collar criminal defense before talking with prosecutors or investigators. A criminal defense lawyer vigorously guards your rights and freedom throughout the legal process.

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