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Attorney General Baker Announces Criminal Sentences in Public Service Commission Identity Theft Scam

PRESS ADVISORY

Attorney General Baker Announces Criminal Sentences in Public Service Commission Identity Theft Scam

February 10, 2005

Attorney General Thurbert Baker announced today the successful prosecution of two individuals for an identity theft scam revolving around claimed employment with the state Public Service Commission. After Attorney General Baker obtained indictments against Lamar Brown, Shayla Floyd and Rayfield Lakes, Brown and Floyd elected to avoid a trial by entering guilty pleas in front of DeKalb Superior Court Judge Michael Hancock to felony criminal charges.

The State first became aware of this crime ring when a apartment complex manager attempted to verify Floyd’s alleged employment with the Public Service Commission. The Public Service Commission had no record of Floyd being a PSC employee, but the Commission became concerned when the manager stated that he had two paystubs from Floyd indicating she was a PSC employee. During the course of the investigation by the Attorney General and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Floyd admitted that the paystubs were forged and that she had obtained the documents from Lamar Brown.

A subsequent search of Brown’s residence revealed credit card files for three different individuals which had been used to purchase goods and services for Brown and his associates. The investigation determined that Brown had obtained the credit card information from an accomplice, Rayfield Lakes, who had obtained the information during the course of his employment at a LaQuinta Inn. The Attorney General obtained indictments from the DeKalb County grand jury against Lamar Brown (2 counts Forgery in the 1st Degree, 2 counts Forgery in the 2nd Degree, 2 counts Felony False Statement, 4 counts Financial Identity Fraud and 1 count Financial Transaction Card Fraud), Shayla Floyd (2 counts Forgery in the 1st Degree, 2 counts Forgery in the 2nd Degree, and 2 counts Felony False Statement) and Rayfield Lakes (4 counts Financial Identity Fraud and 1 count Financial Transaction Card Fraud).

Following the guilty pleas on Monday afternoon, Judge Hancock sentenced Lamar Brown to a 10 year sentence (3 years to serve and the balance to be spent on probation) plus restitution in the amount of $2,617.59. Floyd, who had no prior criminal history, received First Offender treatment from the Court and was sentenced to a 5 year sentence plus a $500 fine. Lakes has an outstanding bench warrant for his arrest on these charges and currently is being sought by law enforcement.

In announcing the sentences, Attorney General Baker stated, “This is another step forward in the fight to end identity theft in Georgia. As potential victims become more knowledgeable about what to look out for, identity thieves will find Georgia a bad place to do business.”

Assistant Attorney General Kimberly Schwartz handled the prosecution for the Attorney General’s office. The investigation was handled by Special Agents Kelli Bowles and Wesley Horney of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.