Three Cleveland men accused of buying gift cards with fraudulent checks

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Antonio Haywood (left), Demetrius Long and Robert Haywood (Photos courtesy: Willoughby police)

WILLOUGHBY, Ohio- Three men suspected of using fraudulent checks to buy gift cards were arrested outside the Willoughby Target last week.

Officers were called to the Target store at the Willoughby Commons Shopping Center on Dec. 23 for a theft. When officers arrived, they found three suspects in a car leaving the shopping center.

Police said Antonio Haywood, 39, and Robert Haywood, 32, each bought three Target gift cards valued at $100 a piece using fraudulent personal checks. Demetrius Long, 38, helped in the purchases. All three men live in Cleveland.

Officers found a computer, ID scanner and fake checks in their car. Willoughby police said they believe the men committed similar crimes at Walmart, Giant Eagle and Toys-R-Us.

“The Willoughby Target had also learned that numerous other Target Stores throughout Ohio had been victims of similar criminal activity by a group of suspects that seemed to be connected in one criminal organization,” the police department said in a news release on Tuesday.

Willoughby police said it working with other law enforcement agencies to find out the scope of this crime operation.

Both Haywoods and Long were charged with forgery, identity theft, possessing criminal tools and theft. Long was also charged with complicity and tampering with evidence.

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