O’Fallon Man Indicted on Federal Wire Fraud Charges
ST. LOUIS, MO—A federal grand jury indicted Dana Jefferson on multiple fraud charges involving a scheme to lure lenders by falsely representing that he was the beneficiary of a multi-million dollar inheritance.
According to the indictment, Jefferson represented to prospective lenders that he had been left a multi-million inheritance from his deceased father’s estate, with the amount ranging from $5,000,000 to $200,000,000. The indictment alleges that Jefferson sometimes told lenders that the funds were kept in a trust, and other times that the funds were kept either in a local credit union or a bank in Miami, Florida. Jefferson also told lenders that he did not have immediate access to his inheritance, providing various explanations as to the reasons why. The indictment alleges, however, that Jefferson had not been left any such inheritance. Instead, the inheritance was fiction used to induce his victims to lend him money and to offer him free housing at their residences. According to the indictment, Jefferson made false promises to lenders that once he gained access to his inheritance, he would use the funds to purchase homes for them, or in some cases would repay double the amount of the loan. The indictment alleges that Jefferson also promised other lenders that he would purchase them expensive motor vehicles, pay for plastic surgery, cruises and a wedding. The indictment states that Jefferson obtained in excess of $700,000 in loans from at least five individuals as part of his scheme.
Jefferson, 53, O’Fallon, MO (also known as Casey Jefferson, Dana Tiberius Jefferson and Dana Tyrone Jefferson) was indicted late Wednesday on four felony counts of wire fraud. Jefferson was apprehended Friday, September 5, 2014 on related charges and was later ordered to be detained pending trial.
If convicted, each wire fraud charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and/or fines up to $250,000. In determining the actual sentences, a judge is required to consider the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide recommended sentencing ranges.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Richard Finneran is handling the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
As is always the case, charges set forth in an indictment are merely accusations and do not constitute proof of guilt. Every defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty.