Last updated: June 14. 2014 12:00AM - 4856 Views
By - rdupuis@timesleader.com

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WILKES-BARRE — A Loomis Street man must pay back more than $4,000 for a bad-check spree last year, including an incident in which he took a cab to the bank to cash one of the fraudulent documents.

Musa Farrakhan, 31, also will spend time in probation under the sentence handed down Thursday by Luzerne County Judge Tina Polachek Gartley.

Farrakhan pleaded guilty in the two cases on April 1. He was scheduled to be sentenced on May 27, but the sentencing was continued until this week due to elevator issues in the county courthouse.

According to court documents:

• On Nov. 16, a male later identified as Farrakhan arrived at the Pennstar Bank on North Wilkes-Barre Boulevard to open an account. He deposited a check drawn on a Manpower services payroll account for $1,107, withdrawing $807 and leaving $300 in the account. About 15 minutes later, Farrakhan came back to withdraw another $200.

• On Nov. 18, he deposited a $992 Manpower check and withdrew $892 of that. He returned less than an hour later to withdraw more money from the account.

• On Nov. 20, he cashed another $992 check from Manpower, receiving all the proceeds.

Police said Farrakhan walked away with $3082 from those checks.

Officials soon learned that the checks were not legitimate, and upon contacting Manpower were told that Farrakhan had never worked for them and they never issued him any checks.

In the second case:

• On Nov. 18, Farrakhan rode up to the drive-through window at a Pennstar branch in Kingston as a passenger in a taxicab. According to bank officials, he cashed a fraudulent Manpower check there for $1,069.

Gartley sentenced Farrakhan to serve six months to one year less one day in the Luzerne County Correctional Facility, but with 200 days of credit for time served he is immediately eligible for parole. He must, however, petition for parole when he has a valid residence, court documents state, and is required to work.

He also was sentenced to two years of probation concurrent to that sentence, to be followed by another two years of probation.

Farrakhan also must pay $4,150 back to Pennstar.

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