U.S. Attorney's Office
Northern District of Indiana
(219) 937-5500
June 20, 2014

Week in Review—Hammond

HAMMOND, IN—The United States Attorney’s Office announced the following activity in Federal Court:

PLEA (before District Judge Joseph S. Van Bokkelen):

  • Melissa Yates, 37, of Michigan City, Indiana pled guilty to the felony offense of conspiracy to commit mail fraud. This charge was filed as a result of an investigation by the United States Postal Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Sentencing has been set for 8/26/2014. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Toi Houston.

If convicted in court, any specific sentence to be imposed will be determined by the judge after a consideration of federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

DISPOSITIONS (before Chief Judge Philip P. Simon):

  • Michael McClellan, 40, of Richton Park, Illinois was sentenced to 51 months, supervised release of two years and to pay $212,675.68 in restitution of which $203,844.77 shall be joint and several with co-defendant Tina McClellan after being found guilty of the felony offenses of bringing in and harboring aliens, mail fraud and monetary transactions in criminally derived property. According to documents filed in this case, McClellan and his wife submitted false bills to the State of Illinois and Healthy Start for child care services. They used more than $10,000 of fraud proceeds to buy the Paragon Restaurant in Schererville. At the restaurant, Michael filed false reports with Indiana Work Force Development not reporting the illegal aliens he paid in cash. This case was the result of an investigation by the Bureau of Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Department of Labor. This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Gary Bell.
  • Tina McClellan, 38, of Richton Park, Illinois was sentenced to one day time served, 24 months of supervised release with home detention of 12 months and to jointly pay $203,844.77 to the State of Illinois in restitution after being found guilty of the felony offenses of bringing in and harboring aliens, mail fraud and monetary transactions in criminally derived property.  According to documents filed in this case, McClellan and her husband submitted false bills to the State of Illinois and Healthy Start for child care services. They used more than $10,000 of fraud proceeds to buy the Paragon Restaurant in Schererville. This case was the result of an investigation by the Bureau of Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Department of Labor. This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Gary Bell.

DISPOSITION (before District Judge Rudy Lozano):

  • Robert Ross, 28, of Gary, Indiana was sentenced to 63 months’ imprisonment and two years’ supervised release after pleading guilty to the felony offense of being a felon in possession of a firearm. According to documents filed in this case, an employee of the Gary Sanitation District testified that Ross had pointed a firearm at him and another Gary city worker, prompting them to call 911. Police responded to the scene and arrested Ross. This case was the result of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jennifer Chang-Adiga.
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