Credit card cases resolved despite missing mastermind

Eight of the conspirators in a credit card scheme that netted more than $362,000 have resolved their court cases, but the case of the alleged mastermind, Joseph S. Ellis, is still on hold.

Connecticut state police in March 2012 charged Ellis, 45, of New London and nine other area residents, including his daughter, Shauntay Ellis, with using counterfeit Discover credit cards to obtain cash advances, gift cards and merchandise from area businesses. The offenders were using cards bearing their real names with account numbers belonging to innocent victims from across the country, according to the state police.

Ellis, charged with first-degree larceny and conspiracy, was free on bond while his case was pending in Superior Court when he was arrested on an outstanding warrant for a 2009 drug trafficking case in Louisiana.

Court officials had intended to resolve Ellis' case first, since they said he was running the scam. But since they expected him to be in Louisiana for some time, they moved forward with the other cases and resolved them with plea agreements.

John Radack, 46, was sentenced today to three years in prison followed by three years probation for his role in the scheme. He had used 12 credit cards to obtain cash advances at the local casinos and purchase goods at area stores, totaling $45,000, according to prosecutor Lawrence J. Tytla. His longtime struggle with drug addiction drove Radack to the scheme, Tytla said.

Michaela Johnson, 24, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit third-degree larceny and in December received a suspended prison sentence and three years probation.

Aubrey Davis, 48, was sentenced in February to 15 months in prison for first-degree larceny. Jessica Santos, 26, was sentenced in February to 20 months in prison for first-degree larceny.

David Chamblee, 62, Ricky Cordero, 42, Shauntay Ellis, 26, and Michael Hyslop, 30, have pleaded guilty and await sentencing.

There is an outstanding warrant in the case for Alice Phillips, 26, of New London, according to court officials.

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