SACRAMENTO, CA - 24-year-old Michael Moynihan of the Bay Area is accused of scamming close to one thousand people. He is in custody at Sacramento County Jail after an investigation into a nationwide scheme.
Authorities say he posed as an officer to acquire information falsely about recently released inmates. Then, he pretended to be a bail bondsman - telling his victims their bail would be increased and they would be re-arrested if they didn't pay up.
During a one to one conversation inside Sacramento County Jail with Moynihan, he said the allegations were all a lie.
"It's not accurate at all," said Moynihan.
Topo Padilla, who owns Greg Padilla Bail Bonds in Sacramento and is President of the Golden State Bail Agents Association said, "He had a very intricate scheme going on. We've been trying to get to the bottom of it in our industry."
Placer County Sheriff's Detective Jim Hudson has several recorded phone conversations between Moynihan and law enforcement where Moynihan identified himself as "Officer Johnson".
Detectives in Colorado Springs called Placer County authorities and requested their help on this case. Authorities arrested Moynihan at the Red Lyon Inn last week.
Moynihan is in custody at Sacramento County Jail on a no-hold parole hold until charges are filed by the United States Attorney's Office in California.
"He contacted agencies and jails in 42 states that we know of," said Hudson.
Detective Hudson says Moynihan contacted all the bail bondsmen in the Sacramento area. According to Hudson there's no word on exactly how many victims there are, but authorities hope to have a final tally in a few weeks.
By Suzanne Phan, firstname.lastname@example.org