Court of Appeal upholds fraud conviction
A magistrate properly convicted a man of fraud by false pretenses for purchasing two generators with another person’s credit card, the Court of Appeal ruled.
Magistrate Samuel McKinney convicted Craig Wells and ordered him to compensate Lightbourne Marine $16,100.58 to avoid spending 18 months in prison.
Carlo Chee-A-Tow discovered the unauthorized purchase on his account through online banking on July 25, 2018 and reported the matter to the police.
A sales representative of Lightbourne Marine received a phone order for two generators by a person who identified himself as Douglas Stotlar.
The generators were charged to Chee-A-Tow’s credit card and a sales authorization was faxed to the office.
Wells later picked up the generators. At trial, the sales representative acknowledged that it was unusual for a delivery driver to collect generators for delivery to purchasers.
In a police interview, Wells, who said he was co-owner of a moving company, admitted to collecting the generators but claimed that he delivered the generators to an address in Cable Beach, but was unable to provide the name and contact for the receiver.
At trial, Wells said he was contacted by a person with a funny name who was a first-time client. The person asked him to collect two generators from Lightbourne Marine and have them delivered to a location in Cable Beach.
He testified that he was asked to see a lady at the front desk at Lightbourne Marine who would take care of everything. He also claimed that he took the investigator to the house in Cable Beach and showed him the two empty pallets in the driveway of the home as pallets on which the generators were contained.
The court found no “lurking doubt as to the safety of the verdict” in the case.
Alex Morley represented Wells and Francis Wilson appeared for the Office of the DPP.
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