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NY man sentenced in federal bank fraud

Valley banks among those targeted

YOUNGSTOWN — A New York man was sentenced to federal prison for defrauding Mahoning Valley and Northeast Ohio banks out of thousands of dollars.

Rodney Martin, of the Bronx, accepted terms of a plea agreement and pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and aggravated identity theft in June 2023.

Earlier this week, U.S. District Judge John R. Adams sentenced Martin to six years in federal prison and ordered him to pay $107,800 in restitution — the amount investigators say the banking institutions lost in the scheme.

A co-defendant, Bonnie E. Cabrera, of New York, New York, was sentenced by the same federal judge to six years in federal prison and will be required to pay $137,085 in restitution.

Five additional charges, three for bank fraud and two for aggravated identity theft, were dismissed.

The fraudsters are said to have conspired with an unindicted co-conspirator, who in the court document is said to have fed information and “directed” Martin and Cabrera through the use of earpieces connected through Bluetooth as they cashed fraudulent checks.

Investigators said as part of their “criminal scheme,” before or after entering the bank, the pair would call the co-conspirator.

From September 2022 to October 2022, the indictment states that at least 35 known instances occurred in which the pair carried out the scheme.

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