Arrest warrant issued for Brian Laundrie for “unauthorized use” of credit cards linked to the Gabby Petito affair
NORTH PORT, Florida – Brian Laundrie is now officially a wanted man. While police previously classified him only as a missing person of interest in Gabby Petito’s disappearance, the FBI now says there is an arrest warrant against his arrest.
The FBI says Laundrie, 23, was indicted by a grand jury on charges “relating to Mr. Laundrie’s activities after the death of Gabrielle Petito.”
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In documents released by investigators, the FBI indicates that Laundrie will be charged with intent to defraud for one or more unauthorized uses of a Capital One Bank card, between August 30 and September 1, for an amount of more than $ 1,000. The indictment does not specifically say who owns the cards.
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“While this warrant allows law enforcement to arrest Mr. Laundrie, the FBI and our partners across the country continue to investigate the facts and circumstances of Ms. Petito’s homicide,” The FBI said in a press release. “We urge those with knowledge of Mr. Laundrie’s role in this case or his current location to contact the FBI.”
PDF: View the indictment and warrant documents here
Laundrie family attorney Steven Bertolino responded to the FBI arrest warrant by telling Fox News: “I understand the arrest warrant for Brian Laundrie is related to activities that took place after Gabby’s death. Petito and not his actual disappearance. The FBI is focusing on the whereabouts of Brian and when that happens, the details of the charges covered by the indictment will be dealt with in the appropriate forum. “
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Shortly before the FBI’s announcement, a North Port law firm said it would offer $ 20,000 for information leading to Laundrie’s location, adding pressure to anyone who may have information about the ‘case.
Legal analysis of the laundry indictment
The indictment against Brian Laundrie is a single count and says he committed fraud by using a debit card to withdraw over $ 1,000. Legal analyst and defense lawyer Anthony Rickman says the charge is simple, but it becomes an important piece of a big puzzle.
“By putting in the PIN, he did not have permission to do so, he used his credit card without his consent,” Rickman said, although the indictment does not specify that he is. was the Gabby card used by Laundrie.
Rickman suspects that for the act of using someone else’s credit card to be part of an indictment in a case of this magnitude, prosecutors are using the prosecution to further establish a timeline for Gabby and Brian. The last text from her phone was sent on August 27. Brian returned home on September 1st.
The indictment says the card was used on August 30.
“When you use a card, use an ATM, there’s a camera attached to it. We’ll see its image when it uses that card. It will help law enforcement,” Rickman said.
The arrest warrant that accompanies the indictment says Brian Laundrie must appear before a US magistrate without unnecessary delay. While it’s still not clear whether anyone will be charged in the death of Gabby Petito, who was ruled a homicide, there is now a charge he must face.
“And does that mean that when they have it, he goes straight to a judge?” FOX 13’s Evan Axelbank asked Rickman.
“Right to a judge, in custody, no ifs, no buts,” Rickman replied.
Brian Laundrie’s research continues
The laundry has not been seen for over a week. Law enforcement searched a 25,000-acre reserve near his home in North Port, Florida, based on information from his parents regarding his last known location.
Laundrie’s parents told police their son left on Tuesday, September 14, to go camping on the Carlton Reservation. His parents told investigators they went to the reservation on Wednesday and saw their son’s car there, but not Brian. They returned the next day and drove his vehicle home.
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The laundries then reported Brian’s disappearance the following night.
After Brian went missing, the search at Carlton Reserve began. Officers also removed wagons full of possible evidence from Laundrie’s house.
Brian Laundrie’s silver Ford Mustang was returned from custody to his parents on Thursday, who then left their home for several hours, with a police escort.
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Laundrie’s parents remained silent as the search for Gabby and then the search for their son expanded. Speaking only through a New York-based attorney, the family said early on that they would “stay in the background” as the search for Gabby began.
Gabby Petito’s family maintained that the Laundrie family knew more than they were willing to say, stating through their lawyer: “We think you know where Brian left Gabby. beg to tell us. As a parent, how could you Let us go through this pain and not help each other? As a parent, how could you bring this to Gabby’s younger siblings?
Gabby’s remains were discovered in Grand Teton National Park in the following days. A preliminary autopsy found her death to be homicide, but the cause of her death was still under investigation.
Anyone with information about the case is welcome to submit advice at: www.fbi.gov/petito