Member of fraud ring arrested in Cazenovia

Morrisville College student believed to have ties to NYC-based bank fraud group

— A 19-year-old Morrisville College student was sent to the Madison County Jail this week for his alleged part in stealing thousands of dollars from a local bank account using a stolen ATM card and multiple fraudulent checks. The investigation of a second local suspect, also believed by police to be a Morrisville College student, is ongoing, and the case is believed by police to be connected to a larger fraud enterprise that spans across the state with the ringleader believed to be based in New York City.

After a two-month investigation, Muheez Folayaiye, 19, of Brooklyn, a sophomore at Morrisville State College, was arrested by Cazenovia police, assisted by Morrisville University Police, on Wednesday, May 7, and charged with two counts of grand larceny in the fourth degree, a class E felony, one count of possession of a forged instrument in the third degree, a class A misdemeanor, and two counts of petit larceny, a class A misdemeanor.

He was arraigned in Cazenovia Village Court by Justice Timothy Moore, who entered a not guilty plea into the record for Folayaiye and remanded him to the Madison County Jail in lieu of $5,000 cash or bond. Folayaiye was scheduled to return to Cazenovia village court on May 21.

As of Thursday, May 8, Folayaiye had not posted bail.

“This is the successful conclusion of a joint investigation between the Cazenovia Police Department, the Morrisville University Police and the New York State Police,” said Cazenovia Police Chief Michael Hayes. “It’s been an ongoing case since early March, when it started at the M&T Bank in Cazenovia.”

According to police, Folayaiye and two accomplices allegedly stole the ATM card of a Cazenovia College student and used it to make cash withdrawals from the victim’s account in local banks. Police are still trying to ascertain how the perpetrator’s got the victim’s ATM pin number, Hayes said.

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