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Woman admits fraudulent use of credit cards

A 27-year-old Cheektowaga woman admitted her role in bilking Walmart and other area retail stores out of more than $300,000 in merchandise and gift cards from October 2013 to January 2014, U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul said on Monday.

Danielle Hamilton pleading guilty to conspiring to commit access device fraud and aggravated identity theft before U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. Villardo.

Hamilton and others traveled to stores in Western New York and Pennsylvania where they fraudulently charged merchandise using credit cards obtained without the owners’ knowledge or authority, said MaryEllen Kresse and Elizabeth R. Moellering, assistant U.S. attorneys handling the case.

The access device fraud carries a maximum penalty of five years and a $250,000 fine.

Aggravated identity theft carries a mandatory penalty of two years.

Hamilton’s plea is the culmination of a probe by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the U.S. Secret Service.

Sentencing is scheduled for 9 a.m. June 13.