YULEE, Fla. - A 27-year-old Fernandina Beach woman has been charged for her alleged role in an operation involving mailbox theft and the cashing of stolen checks, deputies said Wednesday.
Victoria Lynn Wegener was recently arrested and now faces counts of forgery and uttering a forged instrument, related to four separate stolen checks that she deposited into her bank account, according to the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office.
The situation started when deputies received several reports of mail being stolen from mailboxes on the eastern side of the county. This happened multiple times from November 2018 through this January, investigators said.
Businesses receiving checks through the mail, such as landscapers and surveyors, seemed to be targeted. Checks stolen from these mailboxes were then forged and placed into other accounts, according to deputies.
The Sheriff’s Office investigated and authorities were led to Wegener, who was given the stolen checks to deposit into her bank account from those who were stealing -- and in return, Wegener would receive a cut of the proceeds, deputies said.
The amount on the checks stolen were $571.63 from J.I. Taylor Court, $250 from 942668 Old Nassauville Road, $250 from 942668 Old Nassauville Road and $500 from 2166 Rockdove Lane. All the homes are in Fernandina Beach.
More charges and arrests are expected against others who were a part of the scheme, Sheriff Bill Leeper said.
In related news, in early December 2018, Nassau County detectives started looking into a similar case involving checks that had been stolen from mailboxes. Officials were specifically trying to track down what happened to a $580 check taken from a Yulee woman’s mailbox on Hurricane Lane.
The victim was waiting for a check from her workplace, but it never arrived -- or so she thought, deputies said.
When the woman contacted her employer, she was told the check had been sent to her home, and it was already deposited. Detectives traced the stolen check and confirmed it had been cashed by Larysa Marie Klingbeil, who put the money in her bank account and then withdrew cash from two ATMs, investigators said.
Klingbeil was arrested and booked into jail. She had an outstanding warrant out for her arrest from Jacksonville for retail theft, deputies said.
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