North Carolina repeat offender pleads guilty to wire fraud

Criminal Law

A North Carolina man has admitted stealing mail from residential mailboxes and using stolen information to commit wire fraud, a federal prosecutor said.

Soheil Akhavan Rezaie, 37, entered his guilty plea Tuesday before a U.S. magistrate judge in Charlotte, U.S. Attorney Dena King said.

Statements and plea documents showed that, beginning last year and through March, Rezaie and others targeted Charlotte neighborhoods and surrounding areas and stole large quantities of mail, including credit cards, tax forms and personal and business bank checks, a news release said.

Rezaie admitted in court that he altered the amounts of the stolen checks or changed the names of the payees to his own and then deposited them into bank accounts he controlled. He then withdrew the funds before the victims and banks could find out the checks were stolen, prosecutors said.

Rezaie pleaded guilty to wire fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years and a $250,000 fine. No sentencing date has been set.

Prosecutors said when Rezaie engaged in the fraud, he was on supervised release for a 2017 mail theft conviction. A second revocation of Rezaie’s supervised release is pending for violating the terms of his supervised release for the 2017 conviction.

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