Memphis, Tenn. - U.S. Customs and Border Protection has the tremendous responsibility of examining Express Consignment cargo arriving from outside the United States before releasing for domestic delivery. A seizure made last year by CBP officers at the Memphis Express Consignment Cargo facility recently helped Florida law enforcement authorities put an end to the criminal activities of a Tallahassee resident.
Utilizing the agency's targeting systems, a package was selected for an intensive exam during which the officers discovered that the package contained 170 fraudulent instruments purportedly drawn on Regions Bank, Washington Mutual Bank, and Compass Bank. The package that was addressed to the defendant was arriving from Togo, West Africa.
CBP officers intercepted this package, as well as an earlier package addressed to the defendant, which contained approximately 158 other counterfeited checks and money-grams, totaling $176,000. Officers also intercepted a counterfeit Nigerian passport bearing the defendant's photograph. Officers found the instruments to be of poor quality and lacking in security features.
Verification from the financial institutions that the instruments were fraudulent resulted in their seizure. The fraudulent instruments were turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement, who coordinated with the United States Postal Service, United States Secret Service, and the Leon County Sheriff's Office resulting in the arrest of the defendant upon her acceptance of the package. The defendant, Jamie Marie Caloway, was sentenced to 46 months in prison for possessing, receiving, and concealing approximately $565,000 in counterfeit cashier's checks.
"The discovery of fraudulent monies and passports are another illustration of how CBP works every single day to protect the people of this country from the effects of fraudulent activities which yield financial losses," said Robert C. Gomez, CBP director of the New Orleans field office.