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Forger faces sentencing

Donna Gray

A Florida man arrested in South Carolina in April for passing a forged check at Wells Fargo Bank in Rifle will be sentenced Jan. 31.Jamison K. Ford, 37, of Marco Island, Fla., faces a penalty of up to 30 years in federal prison and a $1 million fine for bank fraud, transportation of stolen goods or securities and money laundering.According to the Internal Revenue Service, which traced the evidence against Ford through the banking system, Ford was arrested on April 14, 2004, in Charleston, S.C., after his indictment by a federal grand jury in Denver on March 9.In a three-count indictment, Ford reportedly deposited a forged check for $78,250 in the Wells Fargo Bank of Rifle and when the check cleared had the money transferred to a bank in Florida.Ford was investigated by special agents of the IRS-Criminal Investigation office in Grand Junction and the FBI in Glenwood Springs.Ford went to trial in Denver District court Sept. 13-17. The jury deliberated eight hours. On Dec. 15, 2004, Ford, who owned Canyon Transportation in Aspen, deposited a check, drawn on the account of E. Guy Valencic at the First Union Bank of Florida, in the Canyon Transportation account in Wells Fargo Bank of Aspen. Ford had apparently acquired a blank check and forged Valencic’s name, said John Harrison, spokesman for the IRS.Wells Fargo put a hold on the check, which is common practice for large deposits. Such a hold gives the bank a chance to determine if a check is legitimate.Ford, who was in Florida at the time, contacted Wells Fargo Bank in Rifle on Jan. 3, to inquire about the check. He was told the check had cleared and he requested a wire transfer for $76,400 to his account in the Florida bank. Such a transfer of criminally obtained money constitutes money laundering, Harrison said.Contact Donna Gray: 945-8515, ext. 510dgray@postindependent.com


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