COEUR D’ALENE—James Andrew Harris, 44, of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, pleaded guilty yesterday in United States District Court to wire fraud, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced.
According to the indictment and the factual basis read in court today, Harris contacted a Florida resident by telephone about an investment opportunity. Harris told the individual that he had a “connection” in the beef industry who helped restaurants, supermarkets, and other purchasers of beef finance their purchases. Harris represented that there was a great deal of money to be made in financing the purchases and encouraged the individual to participate. To help facilitate the illusion of a partner, Harris utilized an e-mail account, firstname.lastname@example.org, and represented “Cody E” as the partner transmitting e-mail messages. The individual agreed to participate and sent numerous wire transfers totaling $108,610.27. The government is seeking restitution for the victim.
The charge is punishable by up to 20 years in prison, a maximum fine of $250,000, and up to three years of supervised release.
Sentencing is set for November 5, 2012, before U.S. District Judge Edward J. Lodge at the federal courthouse in Coeur d’Alene.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.