Burien Woman Sentenced To Three Years In Prison

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BURIEN – A Burien woman was sentenced to three years in prison for bank fraud and identity theft.

U.S. District Judge Ronald Leighton in Tacoma also ordered Amy Tuita, 30, to pay $72,000 in restitution.

Prosecutors claim that from February of 2006 to March of 2007, Tuita and co-defendant Everett James conspired with at least eight other people to defraud merchants and banks in Washington, Oregon, California, Utah and Idaho.

The group members used stolen or counterfeit checks to purchase large amounts of merchandise at one store, and then return it to another branch of the store for cash.

Prosecutors say the group defrauded Nordstrom of almost $70,000 and Wal-Mart of more than $34,000. All told, stolen checks and fake driver’s licenses were used to purchase almost $200,000 in goods and services.

James pleaded guilty and was sentenced earlier to 65 months in prison and $190,947 in restitution.


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