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Cape man receives probation for writing bad checks

By Staff | Apr 18, 2012

A Cape Coral man accused of writing more than $22,000 in bad checks received probation Monday in a plea agreement with the state.

Jorge Gutierrez, 37, of 1128 N.E. 44th Lane, pleaded no contest to five counts of fraud cash deposit bank item with intent to defraud and one count of larceny grand theft $300 less than $5,000. He was adjudicated guilty.

“He will serve five years on state probation,” Assistant State Attorney Danielle Liguori, who handled the prosecution’s case, said Tuesday.

“As a condition of that probation, he has to pay restitution to Regions Bank,” she said, adding that the total amount is at least $21,000.

Gutierrez has been ordered to pay a minimum of $300 a month.

“We want to ensure he is actually paying the restitution,” Liguori said.

He also has to cover court costs and provide a DNA sample.

Gutierrez could have faced up to 30 years in prison if convicted on all six counts – five years on each charge – then sentenced consecutively.

However, he had little to no criminal history prior to the incident.

“We thought this was a fair resolution,” she said. “We just wanted to make sure the bank got its money back.”

According to authorities, Regions Bank notified the Lee County Sheriff’s Office after Gutierrez’s bank account started showed a negative balance of more than $20,000. The LCSO launched a three-month-long investigation.

The LCSO found that days before Christmas in 2010, Gutierrez deposited worthless checks into his business account under the name AJ Maintenance Solutions. Once the checks were credited to the account, he made several large purchases that included electronics, toys and household items.