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4 GA Men Arrested In Check Cashing Scam

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Sioux Falls Police arrested four georgia men suspected of passing up to 150-thousand dollars worth of bad checks. Police say it's the most elaborate scheme they've ever seen.    

Police say they first heard of 21-year-old Xavier Shields and 25-year-old old Demarcus Stevens of Decator, Georgia and 28-year-old Dwight Daniels and 25-year-old Ryan Hill of Atlanta in August. A housekeeper at a hotel in southwest Sioux Falls found an envelope filled with counterfeit checks.

Officer Sam Clemens said, "People had left and it was our four suspects that had been in that room."

Police found them on Wednesday. Two of them were arrested during a traffic stop near the Get N Go on South Cliff Avenue. The other two were arrested in their Super 8 Motel room on West 41st Street. Police found cash and a typewriter inside, linking them to the crime.
Clemens said, "We believe that they've been stealing mail and getting different checks from businesses primarily construction type businesses but not all of them."

According to police, somehow the men would intercept mail or checks from local businesses, they would copy them, and find transients with ID's. The men would take them shopping so the would look like construction workers and take them to local banks to cash the checks. One of the businesses called police when some of their vendors didn't get their checks.

"The only thing that was removed was the pay to the order name so the amounts were the same, the check numbers were the same. Everything appeared to be legitimate and would used the type writer and just type that name in these," said Clemens.

Police say the four men wrote as many as 48 checks, worth as much as $150,000.

"It's a pretty elaborate system they had. They had been pretty successful at it for some time but I don't think we've ever run into anything quite this complex before," Clemens said.

An elaborate scheme that took place in just three weeks time.

Police say the checks were worth anywhere from $1,500 to $2,000. The transients would get around $150 to $200 for cashing the checks. Some of them have come forward to police, but as of right now, none have been arrested.

Police don't know how long the men have been in Sioux Falls or if they've been doing this anywhere else. They are each being charged with nine counts of possession of a forged instrument.
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