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Cape Gazette
Lewes, Delaware
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September 25, 1998     Cape Gazette
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September 25, 1998
 

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CAPE GAZETYE, Friday, September 25 October 1, 1998 - 17 Nevada wants Townsend extradited to face charges related to bad checks By Dennis Forney Rehoboth Beach businessman Pete Townsend faces extradition to Nevada in the next couple of months unless he makes other arrangements to cover two bad checks, totaling $150,000, written in July to two Las Vegas casinos. According to Dan Ahlstrom, deputy district-attorney in Clark County, Nev., his office is work- ing to obtain a Governor's War- rant forcing Townsend's return to Las Vegas to face the bad check charges. "We want to extradite Mr. Townsend and we have asked our governor's office to issue a warrant to make that happen. Pre- sumably the governor's office in Delaware will honor the request of our governor," said Ahlstrom. Townsend has been unavailable for comment on this situation. Ahlstrom said Townsend is charged with writing checks with insufficient funds to cover them. In Nevada, writing a bad check for more than $250 is considered a felony. Ahlstrom works for a unit that the Las Vegas district attor- ney started 2 1/2 years ago to go after people who write bad checks to casinos. "He believes in this very much and we pursue these matters aggressively," said Ahlstrom. "Right now we have 45,000 active cases pend- ing. It's sig- nificant [the amounts writ- ten by Townsend] but it's not the highest amount we're "going after. TOWNSEND The highest we're currently pursuing is $14 million." Ahlstrom said Townsend wrote a $50,000 check to New York, New York casino and a $100,000 check to The Mirage casino. He said the checks were eventually sent through by the casinos for payment and were returned be- cause of insufficient funds. "After we were contacted by the casinos that the checks were bad," said Ahlstrom, "a number of let- ters were written to Townsend no- tifying him that the checks were not good. We asked him to con- tact us but there has been no re- sponse;' Ahlstrom said that his depart- ment is always available to dis- cuss arrangements for settlements in these matters. "But we've not been contacted and I don't know how this will shake out. I can ne- gotiate the amount of time there will he to pay but I can't negotiate the amount that will be paid. It's not my money or the state's. It's the victims'. Do they [the casi- nos] take less? Yes. But I don't negotiate amounts." Ahlstrom added that in cases like these, where the amount of the bad checks totals more than $10,000, the offender is charged an additional 10 percent that must be paid to the district attorney's office. He added that settlements' are often reached where the offender makes good on the checks, or a certain portion of the outstanding amount, and eventually charges are dropped. "But if charges are to be dropped," said Ahlstrom, "we expect restitution to be made within six months and we also re- quire the offender to attend bad check school here in Las Vegas. That's a four-hour course that stresses a person's need to be re- sponsible for their own life - it's a helpful thing." Ahlstrom said the penalty for someone who doesn't make any arrangements to try to meet the needs of the situation is a possible jail term of one to four years. "I don't want that. That only hap- Continued on page 19 Por In Tune With Nature I"Om'' GradyWhitepowered by mRRInE 4-Stroke Honda Outboard "[he Quiet, Fuel Efficient Motor" We recommend you read the owner's manual and always wear a personal flotation device while boding. Boston Whaler powered by Por In Tom With Nature 4-Stroke Honda Outboard X'O]L]E)IIK "The Quiet, Fuel Effi6ent Motor" m R n I n e We recommend you read the owner's manual and always wear a personal flotation device while boating. iii!!!!!!!!C: :i!iiiiiii iiiiiii!i ............... ':: iii ....................... : iii:::::::: ::iii  ::' :iiiiii ........................... ;: ii::':::ii::::iii  ........................... !i:ii::::i::ii] I :"Improving the qualify: of public education continues to be one of my top priorities. In the last General Assembly, I was successful in having H.B. 758 passed and signed into law. This bill reduces class size to 22 in grades kindergarten through 3rd grade. I encourage everyone to get involved in our public schoofl I irB:Fi, ir:ol uiilsi:foiire '