Man Sentenced for Mail Fraud Conspiracy

Jackson, Miss. A New Jersey man has been sentenced to federal prison after being convicted for conspiracy to commit mail fraud in Mississippi.

The case against 61-year-old James Lewis Johnson was investigated by the Meridian Police Department and the United States Postal Inspection Service.

Johnson received 86 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $107,926.43.

Johnson entered a guilty plea May 21, 2014, to his involvement in a Nigerian run fraudulent scheme involving Craigslist postings. The scheme involved the mailing and shipping of hundreds of USPS Express mail parcels containing counterfeit postage, USPS money orders and cashier checks.

Officials say Johnson printed the counterfeit postage, money orders and checks, mailed them, received money from the victims and forwarded the money to the primary operators in Nigeria via Western Union.

The investigation revealed over 590 wire transactions and over 100 mailings to defraud, with a total victim financial loss of more than $534,600.