3A Pioche man, Jason Williams, age 37, is being held in the County Detention Center, charged by the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department with 13 counts of fraud and forgery.

Sheriff Kerry Lee said their investigation began Dec. 16, 2014 when they were notified by Tillie’s in Pioche, and Big Fish Boat Rental in Panaca.

Deputy Tim Umina explained a check had been written by Big Fish Boat Rental and cashed at Tillie’s, but was suspected to be a forgery.

In this case, Lee said Williams had actually created the check to look like Big Fish Boat Rental and forged the owner’s signature. “He not only signed it, he also produced it on a computer with the name of the business.” However, a comparison of the bogus check and a valid Big Fish check bears little resemblance.

Umina said as their investigation continued they found a number of other checks Williams had been cashing on company names he claimed to own. “There were about six separate business names that were used, and all of them either had came back as account closed or unable to locate.”

“When you write a check on a closed account or one that is unable to locate,” said Umina, “you have created what is known as a fictitious check, which is a form of forgery.”

Williams is charged with 10 counts of fictitious checks, one count for creating a fictitious check, one count of a forged name, and one count of uttering a forged check, which Umina explained is “when you take the bogus check into a business and cash it.”

Total amount of the forged checks was $1,180.

On Dec. 29, Williams was brought in for questioning by the Sheriff’s Department and subsequently arrested at that time. He is currently being housed at the Lincoln County Detention Center in Pioche and has made at least one appearance in Meadow Valley Justice Court. Bail was set at $130,000.

Umina said it is not uncommon for forgers to not write big checks, which might attract attention, but rather go with smaller amounts, which might go unnoticed more readily.

Lee said Williams is also wanted on five felony counts in 2014 from Washington County, Utah, for the same offenses.