EAST ST. LOUIS — A Collinsville man has pleaded guilty to mail fraud after admitting to stealing mail and using the information to obtain credit cards for a co-conspirator.
Michael Alan Carver, 29, entered a plea of guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud in a scheme to obtain money and property through the use of unauthorized access devices and through the commission of identity theft, U.S. Attorney Stephen R. Wigginton said in a press release Tuesday. Carver faces a federal prison sentence of up to 20 years, a fine of up to $250,000, up to three years of supervised release and mandatory restitution. Sentencing has been scheduled for Aug. 2.
As part of the plea, Carver admitted assisting another in stealing mail out of mailboxes. The stolen mail contained means of identification of other people that included names, dates of birth and Social Security numbers. As part of the conspiracy, a conspirator used that information to apply for and obtain credit cards of other people without authorization. The credit cards were used to make purchases. Some of the fraudulently obtained items were shipped or mailed to Carver’s residence. Carver obtained a percentage of the value of the unauthorized credit cards.
The prosecution is the result of an investigation conducted by the Collinsville Police Department, the Postal Inspection Service, the Internal Revenue Service/Criminal Investigations and the U.S. Secret Service. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Norman R. Smith.