Worcester man charged with fraudulently depositing U.S. Treasury check values at more than one million dollars


Date: May 17, 2021

Contact: newsroom@ci.irs.gov

BOSTON — A Worcester man was arrested on Thursday, May 13, 2021 in connection with fraudulently depositing a United States Treasury check of more than $1 million dollars.

Leonardo Nascimento was charged with bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. Nascimento will make an initial appearance in federal court in Boston at a later date.

According to charging documents, on October 30, 2020, Nascimento visited a branch of Santander Bank, opened a business bank account and then deposited a United States Treasury check in the amount of $1,064,613 in someone else's name into the account. Nascimento allegedly provided Santander with a form claiming the payee gave Nascimento permission to cash a check in his name. That form also contained the payee's purported signature. Investigators then spoke with the payee who confirmed that the Treasury Check was his 2019 personal tax return refund. It is alleged that Nascimento did not know the payee and that the signature on the check was not the payee's actual signature.

The charge of bank fraud provides for a sentence of up to 30 years in prison, up to three years of supervised release and a fine of $1 million. The charge of aggravated identity theft provides for a mandatory sentence of two years in prison to be served consecutive to any other sentence imposed. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Acting United States Attorney Nathaniel R. Mendell and Ramsey E. Covington, Acting Special Agent in Charge of Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigation in Boston made the announcement. Valuable assistance was provided by the Worcester Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney John T. Mulcahy of Mendell's Worcester Branch Office is prosecuting the case.

The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.