Man Who Threatened Witnesses With Murder In Recorded Phone Calls From Jail, Charged With Witness Tampering
CHARLOTTE AMALIE — A St. Thomas man who allegedly devised a scheme to steal more than $100,000 from a former doctor and two others and was originally charged with 85 criminal counts for impersonating prominent officials — can now add one more charge to the tally — witness tampering
United States Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert for the District of the Virgin Islands said today that a federal complaint has been filed charging Yamini Potter with one count of contempt of court, witness tampering and obstruction of justice in violation of 18 U.S.C. §402 and §1512.
Potter, 34, is currently charged with eighty counts of wire fraud, two counts of impersonating a federal judge, and obstruction of justice in violation of federal law and two counts of acting in assumed character and one count of grand larceny in violation of Virgin Islands law.
Potter’s next court date is on Thursday at the Alexander A. Farrelly Justice Complex.
According to the affidavit filed in this case, between September 3 to 14, 2020, Potter violated a court order which expressly prohibited Potter from contacting the alleged victims in this case.
Potter is currently in custody pending federal charges and local charges for larceny.
All of his phone calls were and are recorded.
The affidavit further alleges that Potter, while impersonating Virgin Islands
Attorney General Denise George, called the victims in the case multiple times telling them not to testify or cooperate. He even admitted knowing it was a violation of the no-contact court order.
The affidavit further alleges that Potter, pretending to be Ms. George, tells the victims not to come to court or speak with the FBI.
Potter, acting as Ms. George, tells the victims Potter is dangerous because Potter committed a murder, has been in jail for murder, and describes the violence caused upon his purported victim.
Potter further threatens one of the victims with murder and injury if they testify against him.
Prior court documents reveal that Potter pled guilty in 2015 to impersonating an FBI agent in violation of federal law. He was sentenced to one year in prison for that offense.
This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD), and the Virgin Islands Bureau of Corrections (BOC).
It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Alessandra Serano.
United States Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert encourages anyone, and especially elderly victims, who may be a victim of fraud — or of any other crime — to come forward and make a report to the FBI at (340) 777-3363.
U.S. Attorney Shappert said that a criminal complaint is merely a formal charging document and is not in and of itself evidence of guilt.
“Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty,” she said.
For more information on the Department of Justice’s Elder Justice Initiative, please see: https://www.justice.gov/elderjustice