Police: 2 men found with 32 fraudulent checks in vehicle during traffic stop in Lebanon County
LEBANON COUNTY — State Police have charged two men with 32 counts of forgery and other related offenses after they were found to be in possession of fraudulent checks and debit cards during a traffic stop in Bethel Township on Tuesday.
Michael Tilahun, 21, of Upper Darby, and Trokon Diahn, 18, of Darby, were also charged with three counts of access device fraud and criminal conspiracy, State Police say. Tilahun also faces summary violations related to the traffic stop, while Diahn has an additional charge of providing false identification to law enforcement, police say.
According to police, the investigation began when Tilahun was stopped for a traffic violation on Interstate 78 West. During the stop, police detected the strong odor of marijuana emanating from the vehicle and determined there was probable cause to search it.
Police say they discovered 32 fraudulent checks and three debit cards, none of which had Milahun or Diahn’s names on them.
Diahn initially identified himself as Kennedy Poles, and then as David Smith. He changed his name a third time when he was processed at Lebanon County Booking Center, police say. He was found to have several outstanding warrants out of Delaware County, according to police.
Police say they contacted several businesses listed on the checks, and the businesses confirmed the checks were fraudulent.
The total amount of the suspected fraudulent checks was $57,855.56, according to police.
The investigation continues.