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Springfieldian indicted for bank fraud

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A Springfield man was indicted yesterday for his alleged participation in a bank fraud conspiracy.

Shannon Fields, 42, was charged with 11 counts in the indictment that replaces a May 2 federal criminal complaint, according to a news release from the office of Tim Garrison, U.S. attorney for the Western District of Missouri.

Fields and 11 unidentified co-conspirators allegedly stole mail from individuals and businesses to create counterfeit checks they attempted to cash at local banks, including Great Southern Bank, Central Bank of the Ozarks and Regions Bank. The activity took place last year between February and the first week of May, according to the indictment provided by Garrison’s office.

The largest check cashed, according to the indictment, was for $9,150 at Great Southern’s 1451 E. Battlefield Road branch.

The co-conspirators allegedly purchased blank check stock and magnetic ink from office supply stores to create counterfeit checks using checks and personal identity information stolen in mail as templates. In an attempt to cash the checks — though many of the 41 attempts were unsuccessful — Fields and others allegedly created checks payable to the co-conspirators and used stolen information to forge Social Security cards and Missouri driver’s licenses, according to the release.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven Mohlhenrich, and it was investigated by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the Springfield Police Department and the Joplin Police Department.

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