New Jersey Woman Sentenced for Fraud Scheme
|U.S. Attorney’s Office October 25, 2013|
PHILADELPHIA—Katrina Taniesha Waters, 33, of Williamstown, New Jersey, was sentenced today to nine years in prison for an identity theft, loan, and tax fraud scheme involving more than $1.6 million. Waters applied for fraudulent personal loans, credit accounts, and automobile draft loans from several different banks using falsified identification, employment, income, and tax information, as well as false sales and vehicle documents, including fraudulent vehicle identification numbers (VINs). Waters pleaded guilty to 83 counts including bank fraud, false statements on loan applications, filing false tax returns, and false statements to a government agency.
Waters applied for loans from Police & Fire Federal Credit Union, Navy Federal Credit Union, Philadelphia Federal Credit Union, American Heritage Federal Credit Union, Freedom Federal Credit Union, and Susquehanna Bank. She provided the financial institutions with fraudulent information about her income and about the purpose for the loans. For example, Waters and an unnamed conspirator set up an account for a fake auto dealership. In October of 2008, Waters applied for a $25,000 loan from Police & Fire Federal Credit Union to purchase a 2008 Chevy Tahoe, using a fake certificate of title, false VIN, and auto lender documents from the fake dealership. Police & Fire issued the funds made payable to the fake company and Waters withdrew the funds before the fraud was discovered. No vehicle was purchased with the loan.
In addition to the prison term, 24 months of which is a mandatory term, U.S. District Court Judge Juan R. Sanchez ordered a $8,300 special assessment, and three years of supervised release. A forfeiture order lists many of the purchases that Waters made with her ill-gotten gains such as a $425,000 home in New Jersey, rental properties in Philadelphia, two motorcycles, an ATV, hundreds of pairs of designer shoes, and handbags (Gucci, Leboutin, Prada).
The case was investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, FBI, and IRS-Criminal Investigation. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Michelle Rotella.