An Illinois man admitted guilt in federal court docket final week for his involvement in a scheme to commit arson on residential properties and accumulate fraudulent insurance coverage advantages.
Rufis A. Jefferson, 47, of Venice, Illinois, pleaded responsible to 14 federal felony fees: one depend of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, two counts of mail fraud, 10 counts of wire fraud, and one depend of conspiracy to commit arson.
In line with court docket paperwork, Jefferson admitted to being paid off by a member of the family to burn her St. Louis condominium on December 31, 2022, in order that she may accumulate insurance coverage cash. Along with the New Years Eve hearth at Spanish Lake Flats, Jefferson admitted to conspiring with this relative to burn two further buildings in Granite Metropolis and Venice.
A Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) confidential informant recorded lots of the planning conversations and these Illinois buildings weren’t burned. The relative’s insurer is estimated to have paid out greater than $30,000 for the St. Louis condominium hearth.
Evette B. Osuegbu, 61, of Granite Metropolis, can be charged within the indictment and dealing with accusations for committing the identical 14 federal crimes.
“Underneath federal legislation, deliberately igniting residential buildings to file insurance coverage claims for the damages and accumulate advantages is committing fraud, and legislation enforcement is working to prosecute offenders of those hazardous crimes,” mentioned U.S. Legal professional Rachelle Aud Crowe.
Jefferson’s sentencing listening to is scheduled for April 25, 2024. His fees are punishable by as much as 20 years’ imprisonment per depend.
ATF led the investigation, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kevin Burke and Zoe Gross are prosecuting the case.
Supply: Southern District of Illinois
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