April 5, 2017
Las Vegas, NV – Nevada Attorney General Adam Paul Laxalt announced that Thomas Benson, 56, of Las Vegas, was arrested today on seven felony charges. The charges include one count of offering a false instrument for filing or record, one count of theft in the amount of $3,500 or more, two counts of burglary, one count of interfering with a public officer, one count of preventing or dissuading a person from testifying or producing evidence, and one count of bribing or intimidating witness to influence testimony. The alleged criminal acts were committed between April 2016 and March 2017.
According to the indictment, the defendant or defendant’s agents falsified a Nevada residential lease agreement to be recorded at the Clark County Recorder, unlawfully controlled the personal property of others in a residence located in Las Vegas, Nevada, entered the Clark County Recorder’s Office to commit a felony, and also entered the Las Vegas residence to commit a felony. Additionally, Benson is alleged to have interfered with a public officer, dissuaded a person from testifying and intimidated a witness.
“My office will remain vigilant in ensuring the personal and financial safety of all Nevadans,” said Attorney General Adam Laxalt. “This case is a great example of collaborate efforts by multiple law enforcement agencies working together to address alleged fraud against Nevadans.”
Aaron C. Rouse, FBI Las Vegas Special Agent in Charge added, “This case is a result of the diligence of investigators and demonstrates the effectiveness of the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force. The FBI takes pride in our valuable Nevada law enforcement partnerships, who all work tirelessly to maintain the safety of our communities.”
Benson was indicted on March 22, 2017, and is currently being held at the Washington County Sheriff’s Office. He now faces extradition back to Nevada.
This case is being prosecuted by the Financial Fraud Unit of the Office of the Nevada Attorney General. The case was investigated by the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force, which includes an investigator from the Attorney General’s Financial Fraud Unit.
In July, 2016, the Nevada Legislature’s Interim Finance Committee unanimously approved AG Laxalt’s request to create a Financial Fraud Unit to combat increasing financial fraud within the State. Among the 10 positions created using non-taxpayer settlement funds, the office dedicated a criminal investigator to work on the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force, a task force where local, state and federal agencies collaborate to combat regional terrorism.
An indictment is merely a charging document; every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in a court of law.
The criminal indictment against Thomas Benson is attached. To file a complaint about someone suspected of committing theft or fraud, click here.
BENSON, THOMAS ARVEL
(Photo courtesy of the Washington County Sheriff's Office)