Pawn shop operator has thousands more charges filed against him

By: Paige Quiggins Email
By: Paige Quiggins Email

A pawn shop owner in Barbourville has had thousands of more charges filed against him.

Lewis Gray was in court on April 3 where he was charged with 4,582 misdemeanors. Police said the shop is still open, though many of the charges involve transactions at T and L pawn.

The owner of T & L pawn shop in Barbourville faces thousand of misdemeanor charges for alleged deferred deposit check transactions.

"It is a loan that is issued against a check and then either the check is written for an amount over the loan or you pay an amount over the check face value to pick the check up," said Det. Steve Owens of the Barbourville Police Department.

Owens said Gray was not licensed to do such transactions. Police said four people have come to them so far and been told the interest amounts varied.

“That we are aware of, thirty percent per month to as much as two hundred percent per month,” said Owens.

Under Kentucky law, each violation comes with a $1,000 to $5,000 fine which would then be multiplied by the over 4,500 misdemeanor charges to equal anywhere from $45 million to $200 million. That is in addition to the felony charges involving use of credit cards and computer access after police seized multiple bank cards, checks made out to "cash," computers and other electronic devices in mid-March from the shop. Police advise people to scope out businesses before dealing with lenders of any kind.

“Any time that anyone does any type of cash transaction that they do it at a licensed business that they are aware is licensed,” said Owens.

Officials said the investigation has not ended.

“We do expect more charges in relation to the checks to be filed, but that is still an ongoing investigation as well,” said Owens.
Gray's attorney, Warren Scoville did not want to comment. He will be back in court on April 17 for a preliminary hearing. Police said a judge will decide if the case will be heard by a grand jury for a possible indictment.

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