Rebecca Sue Johnson of Maple Ridge Township faces felony charges for abandoning/cruelty to 25 or more animals, which is punishable by up to seven years in prison. She also faces a misdemeanor charge for running an unregistered animal shelter. Johnson was released from jail after posting a $60,000 surety bond.
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer vetoed 13 bills on December 30, including legislation that would have allowed airport authorities to use civil asset forfeiture to seize property from travelers without charging them with a crime.
Civil asset forfeiture is a process used by state and federal law enforcement agencies to seize property they believe is linked to criminal activity, even if the owner isn’t charged. The practice has been a key tool in the War on Drugs and is often touted as a critical means of financially hamstringing major drug traffickers.
“Civil asset forfeiture is a due process violation, and it always has been,” Rep. Justin Amash, L-Mich., said Thursday. “Its history is riddled with injustices not because it’s a valid practice that gets misused, but because its central premise—denying people their procedural rights—is inherently flawed.”
A grand jury in Detroit has returned an indictment charging three Michigan residents for their alleged involvement in a scheme to defraud insurance companies by billing them for medication that was never dispensed.
Wansa Nabih Makki, 42, of Dearborn; her brother, Mahmoud Makki, 37, of Dearborn; and her husband Hossam Tanana, 54, of Dearborn, were each charged with multiple health care fraud and money laundering offenses. Wansa Makki was additionally charged with making a false statement to the Internal Revenue Service after she falsely claimed to be a pharmacist in her tax returns. It is unclear if any of the defendants have acquired legal counsel.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan has charged a Detroit woman for her alleged involvement in a $2 million fraud scheme that sought to defraud the state and federal government out of funds allocated for coronavirus (COVID-19) unemployment assistance.
Brandi Hawkins, 39, is accused of violating federal laws on theft and wire fraud. Attorney information was not available.