Thief steals $1.5M in RVs
An out-of-state man was doing more than enjoying the scenery in West Michigan when he made multiple trips to the region to rob motor home dealers.
Walter J. Nunley of Kentucky admitted to the thefts, pleading guilty this week to all nine of the felony charges that were brought against him in a hearing before U.S. District Court Judge Robert Holmes Bell, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Michigan.
Nunley stole a motor home from the Holland Motor Home business in March 2012 , and he stole two more motor homes from Midway RV Center in Grand Rapids in May 2012.
As part of the criminal conspiracy, the conspirators stole three additional motor homes from businesses located across the U.S.
The total losses for the six motor home thefts are estimated to exceed $1,500,000.
Nunley admitted that he and another man obtained false titles for the stolen motor homes and then sold them under false identities.
Three of the charges Nunley pled guilty to were for interstate theft of motor vehicles, each of which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.
Another three charges were for interstate theft of property, the contents of the motor homes, each of which also carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.
Each of the six charges carries a fine of $250,000.
Nunley also pled guilty to conspiring to engage in interstate theft of property, which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.
With regard to the money laundering, Nunley also admitted at his guilty plea hearing to engaging in a money-laundering conspiracy to conceal or hide the “proceeds” he obtained from the sale of the stolen motor homes.
The offense carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, a fine of $500,000.
Finally, Nunley pled guilty to making false statements to a federal agent, which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000.
A $100 special assessment is imposed for each count of conviction.
Nunley agreed to restitution and forfeiture in connection with the nine charges of conviction.
Judge Bell remanded Nunley to custody following the guilty plea hearing. No date has yet been set for the sentencing hearing.
The FBI has been handling the investigation, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Mike MacDonald is the prosecutor.