The search for these two suspects has been one of the larger manhunts on the west coast for the FBI in recent years--as far as non-violent perps go.

 $38 million dollar fraud suspects caught in Jefferson County

Most of you don't know Jefferson County is a rectangle wedged into the Olympic Peninsula, across Puget Sound from Seattle.  Some of you may know where Port Townsend is? That's it.

   Citizen spots man, woman, on FBI wanted poster.

Bernard Ross Hansen, 61, and Diane Renee Erdmann, 49, of Auburn were wanted on FBI charges after they skipped their sentencing hearing in a decade-old massive fraud case, involving a fake precious metals company that wound up with a $38 million dollar court judgment, and over $10 million in fraud towards 3,000 customers.

Authorities believed the two might even head our way, but instead, they headed Northwest. Tuesday afternoon, May 10th, an area resident saw two people at the Port Hadlock Motel (Port Hadlock is not far from Port Townsend) who matched Hansen and Erdmann's descriptions.

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The witness said the two appeared to be driving a car similar to the one on the poster. Jefferson County Deputies and other law enforcement officers went to the location and began surveillance. The vehicle matched the poster, but the plates were different, likely indicating they'd been stolen.


Fraud suspects captured (FBI Jefferson County Sheriff)
Fraud suspects captured (FBI Jefferson County Sheriff)

The two were then apprehended without incident, both Hansen and Erdmann are now in custody.

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