Jokwan Lamar Harvey, 28, of Warsaw, pleaded guilty to conspiring to manufacture counterfeit federal reserve notes; manufacturing counterfeit federal reserve notes; possession of 15 or more unauthorized access devices; effecting transactions with access devices issued to others to receive payment during a one-year period greater than $1,000; and aggravated identity theft.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, in early 2008, a victim from South Carolina contacted the Duplin County Sheriff’s Office regarding unauthorized purchases on his credit card. The merchandise purchased on the card had been shipped to an address adjacent to a residence in Faison where Harvey frequently stayed. Unauthorized charges were also made to other businesses, including Alltell.
Through investigation, it was learned that Harvey had come out of the home and assumed possession of the package being delivered to the nearby address. He claimed the package was his and it was mistakenly delivered to the nearby address, prosecutors said.
Further investigation revealed that Harvey and others, including Linwood Kareem Smith, Melissa Carl Payton and Felisa Carlton assisted in the manufacturing of more than $22,000 in counterfeit bills at the same Faison-area home. They were all charged in March 2008 after Duplin authorities investigating a tip found a hub for money manufacture and drug trafficking.
According to prior information released by Duplin Sheriff Blake Wallace, the home searched by authorities was Payton’s address of 312 N.E. Center St., Faison. Authorities were initially delayed when attempting to enter the residence due to the fact that the doors were locked from the inside. After some delay, Harvey came to the door and unlocked it. Smith was hiding in a bathroom.
Federal prosecutors said that, during the search, officers seized “drugs, firearms, counterfeit currency, counterfeit manufacturing instrumentalities and evidence of credit card and identity fraud.” A bag containing approximately 500 grams of cocaine powder (and a detectable amount of crack) and two firearms were found hidden in the attic, according to reports.
Following the arrests in March 2008, Wallace said deputies discovered a computer and hard drive, which contained the personal information of several victims. Several counterfeit U.S. bills and a printer used in the counterfeiting were also confiscated by sheriff’s authorities and handed over to the United States Secret Service. A pound of cocaine, a flat-screen television investigators said was purchased with counterfeit bills and the two weapons — a Tech-9 submachine gun and a .25-caliber pistol — were also found in the home, investigators said.
Payton and Carlton have already pleaded guilty to counterfeiting and aiding and abetting. Smith has also been indicted in connection with the same counterfeiting charges, along with gun and drug charges.
Harvey faces a lengthy prison sentence, up to 50 years, and fines hovering around $1 million, as a result of the pleas.
For the conspiracy charge, the maximum penalty is up to five years imprisonment. For manufacturing counterfeit federal notes, the maximum sentence is up to 20 years imprisonment. The maximum penalties for the possession of unauthorized access devices and effecting transactions with access devices are up to 10 years and 15 years, respectively.
For each of the four charges, a fine of up to $250,000 and up to three years of supervised release may also be leveled along with the prison terms.
Additionally, the aggravated identity theft charge requires a mandatory two years imprisonment consecutive to any other prison term imposed for the effecting transactions charge.
Chris Berendt can be reached at 910-592-8137, ext. 121, or by email at email@example.com.