201604

BREAKING: Four Arrested & Indicted in Craigslist Employment Scam Targeting College Students

PHOENIX – Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced a State Grand Jury indicted four individuals in connection with a Craigslist employment and credit improvement scam. Twelve victims have been identified. Most of the victims were in their twenties and looking for part-time work while going to school.

Shelter Worker Accused of Stealing from Homeless Faces Additional Charges

PHOENIX – Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced additional criminal charges have been filed against a former employee at the Phoenix Rescue Mission accused of stealing social security benefits from the homeless. A State Grand jury indicted Sergio Solorzano on three additional felony charges of Fraudulent Schemes & Artifices, Theft, and Taking the Identity of Another.

The Attorney General’s Office learned of two more victims after Solorzano’s arrest in January 2016, bringing the total number of victims to three.

Arizona Man Sentenced to 19 years in Prison for Sexual Exploitation of a Minor

PHOENIX – Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced a judge sentenced Mark Edward Ray to 19 years in prison for Sexual Exploitation of a Minor. Ray will be placed on lifetime probation and will also be required to register as a sex offender after serving his prison sentence. Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Jay Adleman handed down Ray’s sentence saying the “evidence was overwhelming,” and the circumstances of the crimes were “unusually aggravated.”

San Tan Valley Woman Sentenced to 5 Years in Prison

PHOENIX – Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced April Mooney was sentenced to five years in prison after stealing approximately $240,000 from her employer. Mooney was sentenced after a jury found her guilty of one count of Theft and four counts of Fraudulent Schemes and Artifices last month.  Mooney stole $240,000 and used the money to pay for vacations, dining, shopping, and ATM withdrawals at various casinos.

Chandler Woman Indicted on State Benefits Fraud Allegations

PHOENIX – Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced a State Grand Jury indicted Jennifer Garrett on 10 felony counts after allegedly falsifying her income to qualify for more than $70,000 in state benefits. During the time Garrett aka Jennifer Haynie received state medical benefits, investigators allege she and her then-husband owned and operated a successful car restoration business in Arizona. In addition, Garrett allegedly purchased a Nissan 350Z and a Mercedes SUV while receiving state benefits. 

Arizona Files Lawsuit Against Volkswagen

PHOENIX – Attorney General Mark Brnovich filed a Consumer Fraud Lawsuit in Maricopa County Superior Court against Volkswagen, Audi, and Porsche for allegedly defrauding Arizonans by falsely advertising, selling, and leasing thousands of so-called environmentally friendly, low-emission Clean Diesel cars.  More than 4,000 Arizonans own so-called “Clean Diesel” Volkswagen, Audi, and Porsche vehicles.

Indicted Tucson Woman Accused in National Money Laundering Scheme

TUCSON - Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced a Pima County Grand Jury charged Courtney Rochelle Ward with Money Laundering, Fraud, and Forgery for allegedly participating in a national money laundering scheme. The AZAG Border Crimes and Special Investigation Section began an investigation after Ward began depositing and withdrawing more than $140,000 into Wells Fargo bank accounts. Ward is suspected of smurfing, an activity that involves making numerous cash deposits of less than $10,000 at multiple bank branches to avoid reporting requirement triggers.

Missing Convicted Sex Offender Apprehended

TUCSON - Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced convicted registered sex offender Chad Andrew Berkley is back in custody after being on the run for more than two months. The U.S. Marshals arrested Berkley in Arivaca, AZ after tracking him through multiple states. Berkley is currently facing Sexual Exploitation of a Minor charges. A judge set Berkley's new bond at $500,000. He's currently being held in the Pima County Jail.

Scottsdale Man Indicted for High-Limit Credit Card Scheme Advertised on Craigslist

PHOENIX – Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced a State Grand Jury indicted Andrew James May on six felony counts for his involvement in an alleged credit card scheme. May is accused of scamming customers into paying thousands of dollars in processing fees for high-limit credit cards and failing to deliver the credit cards to customers. The indictment charges May with one count of Fraudulent Schemes and Artifices, one count of Theft, and four counts of Criminal Impersonation.