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Hays Prison Inmate Sentenced in Fraud Scheme Carried Out While Behind Bars

Damon Thomas Young also known as Morgan Sylvia – a prisoner at Hays State Prison in Chattooga County, Georgia – has been sentenced for a fraud scheme to steal heavy equipment worth nearly $3 million from various dealers.  All this, while behind bars.

U.S. Attorney Kurt R. Erskine said Young is currently serving a 20-year sentence, on a charge of Aggravated Assault on a police officer in addition to a 10-year sentence for violation of the Georgia Racketeer Influenced & Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act; he also has prior convictions for theft by taking, impersonating an officer, in addition to arson, forgery, burglary and arson, and theft by deception. 

His maximum possible release date from state prison is June 16th, 2030.

According to Erskine, while serving that state prison sentence, in 2019, Young used a contraband cell phone to defraud – or attempt to defraud – several heavy equipment dealers out of equipment worth millions of dollars.  

Using the alias Morgan Sylvia and pretending to be a purchasing agent with AbbVie, a real biopharmaceutical company, Young ordered heavy construction equipment that he had delivered in and around Ranger, Georgia – where he and his family lived. 

He then put the equipment up for sale to buyers on Craigslist.

Young communicated with equipment dealers by phone, text, and email from behind  prison bars.

Young, age 39, has been sentenced to seven years in prison in this case to be followed by three years of supervised release, and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $30,000 to the on-line purchaser of the stolen equipment. 

The Court ordered that five years of the federal sentence must run consecutively to the state sentence that Young is currently serving.  Young was also convicted of wire fraud and aggravated identity theft on August 27th of this year (2021), after pleading guilty.

(WZQZ Chattooga County Radio)

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