He’s convicted of stealing nearly one million dollars from the government. The US Marshals believe this fugitive has protection from a large organization – and they need your help to find him.
Durand Micheau was sentenced to nearly 10 years in prison for fraud and identity theft.
When it was time to serve his time, he took off- and sent a letter to the US Marshal of the Eastern District detailing why the law does not apply to him. His reason may surprise you.
“This guy was the head of an organization that did a bunch of IRS tax fraud schemes collecting a ton of money,” says Deputy Aaron Garcia, the US Marshals Detroit Fugitive Apprehension Task Force Supervisor.
The 50-year-old Micheau was convicted along with his wife, two brother-in-laws and two others of mail fraud, aggravated identity theft and conspiracy.
“Out of 22 fraudulent returns he requested $1.3 million is what he requested in return funds, IRS funds,” says Garcia.
And the Marshals say he received nearly $1 million dollars in checks from the IRS.
But the US Marshals say Michaeu has no plans to serve his 114-month sentence or pay back the $360 thousand owed in restitution.
“A cease and desist letter was sent to our office that the US Marshals Service has no authority to continue the search for him, because it’s all in fraudulent means,” says Garcia.
The letter police say came from Michaeu says “Durand Micheau-el is a Moorish American national and has never been a US citizen.
“People in this organization do not believe that the government has jurisdiction over them, that they’re a sovereign nation,” says Garcia.
The letter goes on to say Michaeu has never had a Social Security card, birth certificate, driver’s license, I-9, Selective Service or any other government contract.
Police say that’s a lie and they have his driver’s license photo from 2005.
We called the Moorish Science Temple of America in Detroit on Grand River. They said they don’t know Michaeu, nor do they agree with these beliefs. They also say that the Moorish Science Temple of America and Moorish American Nationals are two very different organizations.
“This guy has an extensive criminal history, speaking with the US Attorney, this guys in one of the top categories for criminal history out there and that’s why he received so much time of incarceration,” says Garcia. “Burglary, larceny, four convictions out of that – 3 for fraud alone, 3 arrests, two convictions, three for narcotics arrest one conviction, stolen vehicles, assault, this guy’s criminal history is pages long.”
The hunt for Michaeu is difficult, as the Marshals believe he has plenty of help.
“We believe he’s still in this area, we believe that he has a lot of people willing to help him that share the same philosophy that he’s really done nothing wrong,” says Garcia.
Durand Michaeu is 5-foot-9 155 pounds and believed to be in the Redford area- possibly living under an alias’s.
The Marshals hope to resolve this peacefully. They’re asking Michaeu to come forward and turn himself in.
“We welcome talks with this organization to see what we can do to complete this,” says Garcia.
As always there’s a cash reward for any information leading to the arrest of Durand Micheau.
You can call the US Marshals anytime at 313 234-5656 and remember you can remain anonymous.