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DEARBORN, MI – A 70-year-old Huron Township woman, who allegedly was the head of an organized crime ring, along with three other individuals were recently arrested and arraigned on charges concerning an Organized Retail Fraud Enterprise that was doing illegal business out of a little dive called the Cas Bar located at 7800 Michigan Avenue in Detroit.
Cash, drugs, high powered weapons, television sets, liquor, coffee and many other items were confiscated when several search warrants were executed. Over $1,000,000 in cash and stolen merchandise were recovered. During a press conference Dearborn Police allege that Beverly Jo Sassin, also known as Mama Joe, was the leader of the crime ring.
During the press briefing, Chief Haddad stated that the Dearborn Police Department, along with Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office, conducted an extensive investigation into the alleged Organized Retail Fraud Enterprise that had been plaguing the Metro Detroit area for numerous years.
On the morning of Monday November 26th, 2018, the Dearborn Police Department coordinated with federal, state, and local partners to execute multiple search warrants. Items recovered included a large amount of merchandise and over $620,000 in cash allegedly used to fund the criminal enterprise.
In October of 2016, Metro Times published an article about the small watering hole and how it remained unchanged. The writer, Michael Jackman, said that “To enter through Cas Bar’s front door is to be transported to another place and time.” Little did he know that at the moment he had stepped into a retail fraud enterprise.
Authorities believe that heroin and crack addicted drug addicts were used to steal from places such as Kroger, Meijer, Home Depot and Target. Many of the items would be brought in where the addicts would exchange the goods for quick cash. Then the items would be sold or fenced out of Cas Bar.
The Wayne County Prosecutors Office is working on having Cas Bar shut down and padlocked because the defendants are connected to the business.
Beverly Jo Sassin, the owner of the bar, a 70-year-old New Boston resident, Amanda Lynn Mosed, a 38-year-old New Boston resident, and Jodie Beth Welbes, 49-years-old, of Lincoln Park, who is a long time bar tender of the establishment, were arrested and charged by the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office with eight felony counts each. All three were arraigned on November 29th, 2018, before the Honorable Judge Somers of the 19th District Court. Bonds were set at $100,000 cash (no 10%). A Probable Cause Conference was scheduled for December 7, and a Preliminary Exam was scheduled for December 14.
On Friday November 30th, 2018, Christopher Bucannion, a 45-year-old man from New Boston, was also arraigned on the same eight felony charges as the other three subjects. Bucannion had two additional firearms charges bringing the total to ten felonies. The Honorable Judge Somers of the 19th District Court video arraigned Bucannion and levied a $250,000 cash bond with a GPS tether if released. A Probable Cause Conference is scheduled for December 7, 2018.