NewsCrime and Courts


Former Columbia Falls woman sentenced to federal prison on fraud charges

Russell Smith Courthouse
Posted at 9:24 AM, Aug 25, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-25 11:24:08-04

MISSOULA — A former Columbia Falls woman who admitted to defrauding Montana victims by creating and cashing fraudulent checks is headed to prison.

U.S. Attorney Jesse Laslovich says 59-year-old Joanna Marie Snyder, of Boston — and formerly of Columbia Falls — was sentenced to two years in prison and five years of supervised release on Thursday, Aug. 24, 2023.

Snyder — who pleaded guilty in April to wire fraud — was also ordered $7,299 restitution.

The government alleged in court documents that in September and October 2019, Snyder engaged in a scheme to create counterfeit $20 Federal Reserve notes and obtained the identities and bank account information of Montana victims to create and cash fraudulent checks.

An investigation found 19 fraudulently cashed checks drawn off a hospitality account associated with a Kalispell business. Several of the hospitality checks were made out to Snyder and had been deposited into accounts owned by Snyder at the Whitefish Credit Union.

U.S. District Judge Dana L. Christensen presided over the sentencing.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office prosecuted the case. The U.S. Secret Service, the Polson Police Department, the Kalispell Police Department, the Columbia Falls Police Department and the Flathead County Sheriff’s Office conducted the investigation.