Two Men Charged After Stealing Checks From Obama Campaign

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Jessie Adams and Willard ElamAre you your brother’s keeper?

For Jessie Adams and Willard Elam the answer is obviously, “No.”

Bail was set at $100,000 and $75,000 today for Adams and Elam, respectively, who have been charged with stealing two checks from President Barack Obama‘s headquarters in Chicago and depositing them into fraudulent bank accounts.

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A judge set bail higher for Adams, who is charged with “organizing a financial criminal enterprise.”  Allegedly following Adams’ orders, Elam, “charged with continuing a financial crime enterprise,”  and another man still at-large, opened the bank accounts at separate TCF bank branches in the suburbs of Chicago under the pretext of working with the Obama campaign.

Chicago Tribune reports:

Cook County prosecutors said Elam and the unnamed man were accompanied by Adams and pretended to be business owners of actual companies that work with Obama’s presidential campaign.

They opened up the accounts on Sept. 12 and Sept. 13 at TCF Bank locations in two different grocery stores and presented fake documents to open the bank accounts before depositing the checks, one valued at $24,857 and the other at $23,839, prosecutors said.

A comptroller with Obama’s reelection campaign caught on to the scheme when two companies complained they had not been paid. It was not immediately clear how the three men obtained the checks, prosecutors said.

The checks were made out to legitimate businesses, but the suspects deposited them in phony accounts they had set up under the names of those companies, authorities said.

On Sept. 13, Elam entered the TCF Bank in South Holland and used his own identification to set up one of the phony accounts and deposited the check for $23,839.80, according to the police report.

The day before, the person still at large opened a phony account at a TCF Bank in Dolton, also using his own identification, and deposited the second check taken from the campaign.

Ben Finkenbinder, the Midwest press secretary for the Obama campaign, said: “Three checks we sent to vendors made it into the wrong hands, and after learning of this we notified the police. We’re pleased that they’re dealing with the issue swiftly, and don’t expect this to have any impact upon the campaign.”

Now, imagine if they used all of that ingenuity to find real jobs.

Read more at the Chicago Tribune.

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