- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 28, 2014

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - A man who took his dead infant brother’s name caused “no harm to anybody,” the man’s attorney told jurors Tuesday, but prosecutors said he used the identity to defraud an ex-girlfriend, the U.S. government and others.

As the prosecution and defense laid out their respective cases, even the lawyers were calling the defendant by different names.

Prosecutors contend that Leslie Lyle Camick assumed the identity of Wayne Bradly Camick, who died at 3 1/2 months old in 1958, to flee Canada. Camick hatched a scheme in 1997, prosecutors say, to obtain his dead sibling’s birth certificate and obtain a Canadian social insurance number, that country’s equivalent of a Social Security number, in his brother’s name. He then used those documents to establish a new identity in the United States.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Brent Anderson methodically laid out in his opening statement what he called a “roadmap” of the government’s case. Camick first came to the United States in 2000 and over the years fraudulently obtained driver’s licenses, acquired title to a house purchased by his live-in girlfriend in Winfield, and filed patent applications - all using the assumed identity of his younger sibling.

In his opening statement, defense attorney John Henderson outlined for jurors how the defense plans to fight a seven-count indictment charging Camick with aggravated identity theft, obstruction of justice, mail fraud and wire fraud. Henderson repeatedly referred to his client as “Wayne Camick” - saying everybody knows him by that name and that he has harmed no one by using it.

Anderson told jurors how the scheme first unraveled when Camick was arrested in 2011 in New Jersey over a stolen truck report, drawing the attention of immigration officials who routinely monitor local jails to check if arrested foreign nationals are in the country legally.

Jacky He, an agent with the Department of Homeland Security, testified Tuesday that he found inconsistencies with Camick’s initial account at the jail, and in a subsequent interview Camick admitted in a sworn statement that his true identity was “Leslie Camick.” The agent recounted for the jury that Camick told him he owed child support, taxes and other financial obligations in Canada that hindered his ability to get a passport, so he used his brother’s identity to get into the U.S.

The obstruction of justice charge stems from a lawsuit Camick filed after he was criminally charged against his former girlfriend, her company and several law enforcement authorities. That civil suit was quickly dismissed. Now prosecutors contend the lawsuit was filed “strictly to retaliate” against the ex-girlfriend and other witnesses in the criminal case. The defense contends Camick had contemplated filing the lawsuit long before he was indicted.

Camick’s former girlfriend and business partner, Lynn Wattley, took the stand Tuesday to testify about their business and personal relationship. The couple met in 2004 and eventually settled in Winfield, where she bought a house with money she inherited. Wattley returns to the witness stand Wednesday to face cross-examination.

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