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New Mexico fugitives wanted for stealing millions apprehended in Shawnee

Kim Morava

The United States Marshals Service on Thursday released information regarding a raid that resulted in two New Mexico fugitives — on the lam for weeks — being apprehended at a residence in the downtown Shawnee area.

Pottawatomie County Sheriff Mike Booth said the arrest occurred Wednesday at an apartment on Pennsylvania Street, with those suspects wanted in a New Mexico federal case that involved millions of dollars stolen from disabled persons and veterans.

Information began to unfold that the pair could be in the Pottawatomie County area, Booth said, with information leading to the raid and arrests near downtown as Shawnee police, U.S. Marshals, the FBI and Pottawatomie County sheriff’s deputies worked the scene with other authorities.

According to a release from the U.S. Marshals Service, the couple, Susan Harris, 73, and William Harris, 58, were arrested by the United States Marshal Service — District of New Mexico and Western District of Oklahoma — with the assistance of Bernalillo County Sheriff Department.

The couple was wanted by the United States Government for failing to appear on their sentencing date after being found guilty of conspiracy to commit money laundering, mail fraud, and aggravated identity theft.

According to the news release, the pair engaged in a decade-long pattern of unlawfully transferring money from client accounts as part of a fraud scheme and money laundering conspiracy. The stolen funds were utilized to pay off more than $11 million in credit card charges incurred by the defendants and their families, marshals reported.

The pair had apparently been on the lam for six weeks and were found to be living in an apartment in Shawnee.

“This case is an example of strong partnerships and excellent collaboration. We at the United States Marshals Service are proud to be part of a critical investigation with so much at stake,” said Sonya K. Chavez, U.S. Marshal, District of New Mexico. “The many victims in this case deserve to know that so many were involved in bringing these defendants to justice, hoping it will give them peace of mind.”

The arrestees will return to New Mexico to face sentencing in their case.