A Colorado man has been arrested after allegedly failing to pay three different companies for landscape-related work on his home, then threatening to turn them into Immigration and Customs Enforcement when they demanded payment, according to a story by Mitchell Byars in the Longmont Times-Call.
For doing this, Boulder resident Chad Alan Faubus, 42, has been charged with three counts of extortion, seven counts of fraud by check, contractor fraud and theft.
Faubus reportedly contracted with the three companies to insert sprinklers, do tile work and build a brick structure on his patio for a pizza oven, paying for the work with checks ranging in amounts from $500 to $4,000. However, all the checks bounced due to insufficient funds. He still owes the three companies $12,951.42.
The two owners of a concrete company and a worker with a landscape company told police that when they confronted Faubus about not being paid, he threatened to report them to ICE, alleging that they were undocumented immigrants.
In one of the cases, Faubus reportedly offered to meet officials from a company at his bank in an effort to resolve things but then pulled a no-show.
Those three companies are not the only ones whom Faubus apparently stiffed. A construction company said he wrote bounced checks for a $9,000 project on a separate home. A spokeperson from that company said Faubus failed to pay $7,400 of the $9,000 he owes.
Police put the total Faubus owes various companies and workers at about $21,000. Investigations by police and prosecutors are continuing, as there may be other companies that are victims.
“As in every case, the defendant is presumed innocent,” Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty says in a statement. "Based on the facts alleged in this case, we are concerned that there might be additional victims who have not yet come forward. We strongly encourage any victims of this type of conduct to contact the Boulder Police Department or the District Attorney’s Office.”
An investigator looked into Faubus’ two checking accounts and determined that neither account contained sufficient funds within 30 days of when the checks were written.
Faubus contacted Boulder police in October 2018. He told investigators he did not have the money to pay the workers at the time but “wanted to make things right.”
The suspect claimed that the threats he allegedly made were “a misunderstanding,” saying he was just trying to gather personal information like Social Security numbers and driver’s licenses for insurance and workers compensation information.
Faubus is free on a $2,500 bond.