News Channel 6 is learning more about the scams of a convicted con artist who was arrested last week in Columbia County.
Chalice Zeitner is wanted in Arizona for fraud, forgery and theft. Investigators believe back in 2010, Zeitner faked a cancer diagnosis to get a late term abortion in Arizona and even forged a doctor’s note.
After a local couple spoke to News Channel 6 about their experience with Zeitner and a surrogate contract they had with her, another scam victim is coming forward.
This business owner says the name Al Serkez was used by Zeitner to write fraudulent checks associated with her restaurant. The owner did not want to be identified, but she told me Zeitner posed as a consultant to help her restaurant. Once she found out unknown orders were being made in her name, she knew something was wrong.
“My partner and I looked at each other and said this is not normal,” said the business owner.
What appeared to be an opportunity for two restaurant owners quickly turned out to be a fraudulent scheme.
“She started giving offers of how she can help enhance, no cost out of my pocket, she wanted to do it, she works for a Fortune 500 company that goes around helping other businesses,” said the owner.
She said Chalice Zeitner, who went under the name Al Serkez, posed as a business consultant for Bunker Group Incorporated.
The owner of the newly opened restaurant on Washington Road first met Zeitner as a customer back in February.
“She led us to believe that she was pulling this out of her Bunker Group Corporation account to contribute, this is what the company does,” said the owner.
Within days, she says Zeitner was ordering big ticket items like televisions, office supplies, and decorations with bad checks.
“Things started to arrive through certain companies like Staples, but it never had her name on it, it had our name on it,” said the owner.
In addition to spending hundreds of dollars with the restaurant’s name on it, she says Zeitner was racking up money “on the house.”
“She ordered large amounts of food and alcohol and wrote the business a bad check,” said the owner.
The owner has the receipts for the more than $600 she says Zeitner still owes the restaurant.
The business owner says Zeitner also tried to get her personal information as part of the consultation.
“The warning bells went off when she wanted to do my filing because she assumed they were a mess and they wasn’t in order,” said the owner.
In the less than two weeks, the party was over and the business owner went to the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.
“I reported her the phony names, the phony checks, the running out on the last check,” said the owner.
As of right now, Zeitner has not been charged with any crime in Richmond County. She is in jail in Columbia County, awaiting an extradition hearing for her charges in Arizona. That is set for Wednesday at 3 p.m.