Erie County District Attorney Frank A. Sedita, III announced that 51 year old Leland Burks of 33 Viola Park, Buffalo pleaded, as charged, to Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree and Bail Jumping in the Second Degree today before Supreme Court Justice Russell P. Buscaglia. These are the highest charges for which Burks could have been convicted had he gone to trial.
Burks admitted that he illegally obtained credit card numbers from unsuspecting victims and used that information to illegally purchase goods and services, including liquor, hotel rooms, Shea’s Buffalo theater tickets, and Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra tickets. The loss to local merchants totals approximately $15,000.
Burks initially pleaded guilty in November, 2011 but absconded before he could be sentenced. He was arrested, after a manhunt, by the Violent Felony Warrant Squad in August, 2012. Burks faces a maximum prison sentence of 12 years when he is sentenced on November 7, 2012 at 11:00 a.m. before Justice Buscaglia, who this time remanded the defendant to the custody of the Erie County Sheriff pending the imposition of sentence.