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Brooklyn Woman Arrested in Mount Vernon City Hall Check Fraud

check fraud chickMount Vernon — Calesia Richards, age 23, will be arraigned in Mount Vernon City Court on Wednesday, on a charge of Identify Theft in the second degree, following an investigation into the use of fraudulent checks drawn from the City of Mount Vernon bank account, Police Commissioner Richard Kelly said in a news release.

Mount Vernon detectives identified Ms. Richards as having cashed monies from a fraudulent check at a Pay-O-Matic in Brooklyn.

Calesia Richards resides at 279 E. 95th Street, in Brooklyn.

Richards was expected to be arraigned later Wednesday in Mount Vernon City Court on a charge of second-degree identity theft, Kelly said.

Police and city officials said the arrest stemmed from a broader investigation into 15 counterfeit city checks drawn from city accounts totaling about $5,300.

Comptroller Maureen Walker publicized the investigation after she was contacted by the city’s bank regarding the counterfeit checks. She said the checks were reproductions of those that her office uses to pay vendors and bills.

The checks were cashed Jan. 28 at a local check cashing business.

The investigation remains open with detectives pursuing additional leads.

Kelly said city detectives continue to investigate and are working with the Westchester Intelligence Center and the Westchester District Attorney’s Office on the case.

“We anticipate additional arrests in this case,” Kelly said. “Unfortunately, we see that white collar crimes of this kind are increasing, as the easy of technical skills required to create fraudulent checks requires only a few clicks of a computer mouse.”

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