ROSCOMMON – On August 27, 2019 the Michigan State Police (MSP) Houghton Lake Post was contacted by the MSP West Branch Post concerning a check fraud complaint they had been made aware of involving several financial institutions. One of the banks was located in the MSP Houghton Lake Post area of coverage.
The perpetrator attempted to open a business account with a fraudulent check in the amount of $19,000.00 and deposited a fraudulent check in the amount of $17,800.00 into a separate account. The suspect deposited the check in her own account on August 22 and on August 24 withdrew $500.00 from the ATM. On August 26 she went to the financial institution and withdrew $5,000.00 from the account. It was not until after the second transaction the bank was able to verify the check was fraudulent. The bank froze the account and contacted police.
The suspect was identified as 65-year-old Linda Elaine Laux of St. Helen. The investigation revealed Laux was receiving the fraudulent checks from an out-of-state source and sending a portion of the money back. Laux claimed she had no knowledge of the scam; however, she had been previously investigated in 2018 for similar actions. Laux was arrested and lodged in the Roscommon County Jail on December 11, 2019. She was arraigned in the 82nd District Court in Roscommon for one count Uttering and Publishing, a felony punishable by 14 years. Laux was released on a $10,000.00, 10% bond. Her next court appearance is for a felony pretrial on December 23, 2019.
The Michigan State Police would like to remind everyone these fraudulent check scams are still prevalent, and you can be held criminally responsible for your involvement.
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