Fake credit cards lead to guilty plea

GUILDERLAND — A New York City man who, on Sept. 11, 2012, was stopped by a State Trooper on the Interstate 90 exit ramp leading to Crossgates Mall, and was found to have counterfeit credit cards and fake IDs, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to five felony counts.

Reginal Francois, 22, pleaded guilty to criminal possession of a forged instrument before Judge Stephen Herrick in Albany County Court. He will be sentenced on Jan. 7, 2014 and faces up to three-and-a-half to seven years in state prison.

The trooper pulled over the vehicle for a traffic violation, according to a release from the Albany County District Attorney’s Office, and discovered Francois was not licensed; a search ensued, revealing the fake cards.

Francois was traveling with three others who were all sentenced in April:

— Janay Spencer, 22, was sentenced to nine months in the Albany County jail before Herrick in Albany County Court on April 16 after pleading guilty on Feb. 6 to one count of criminal possession of a second-degree forged instrument, a felony;

— Patrick Rooney, 22, was sentenced to one to three years in state prison on April 18, after pleading guilty on Feb. 6, to one count of criminal possession of a second-degree forged instrument, a felony, before Herrick; and

— Malcolm Butler, 23, was sentenced to one to three years in state prison on April 1 after pleading guilty on Feb. 11 to one count of criminal possession of a second-degree forged instrument, a felony, before Herrick.

Assistant District Attorney Benjamin Clark of the Financial Crimes Bureau handled the prosecution of these cases.

Melissa Hale-Spencer

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