A Wilkes-Barre woman is in the Bradford County Correctional Facility on $80,000 bail after she was caught in an alleged scheme to defraud Visions Federal Credit Union of thousands of dollars.
According to Athens Township police, 28-year-old Samantha Lynn Loughney was arrested last Friday while trying to withdraw $8,500 from the Elmira Street branch using a fake ID depicting a woman from New Jersey. The ID had been flagged after Loughney made a $7,500 withdrawal from the Wysox branch. The day prior, she was approved for a $25,000 loan at a branch in Binghamton and attempted to open another account at a Vestal branch, but left the ID she was using at the teller’s desk and never returned.
After eventually providing her real name to police, Loughney claimed to have been contacted by someone who asked her if she wanted to make some money, according to the criminal complaint. Loughney added that she was in need of money and would be receiving a cut of what was stolen, but didn’t know how much she would get. Police uncovered messages between Loughney and an unnamed individual on her phone related to the fraud, along with screenshots that were sent to Loughney from a conversation with another individual that included the name, home address, and date of birth of someone from Englewood, New Jersey.
Loughney was charged with the felonies of forgery – unauthorized act in writing and theft by deception – false impression, and the misdemeanors of false identification to law enforcement officer and possess access device knowing counterfeit, altered.
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for next Tuesday before Magisterial District Judge Larry Hurley.