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Mortgage Fraud: Learn The Scheme Used by Scammers

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Mortgage Fraud
Mortgage Fraud

Mortgage fraud has turned out to be more pervasive after some time and is a specific worry amid a financial subsidence. Change in lodging markets, property holders confronting abandonment and deceitful people searching for income sans work all add to an atmosphere in which mortgage fraud may happen.

The FBI characterizes mortgage fraud as “any material misquote, deception or exclusion depended on upon by a financier or bank to reserve, buy or safeguard a credit.” By that definition, such fraud can obviously be conferred by both loan specialists and candidates, despite the fact that the last may not think their distortions or oversights are sufficiently critical to be a worry.

Mortgage fraud is a wide term that can allude to numerous exercises:

  • Blowing up an examination with a specific end goal to acquire a mortgage for more than a property is worth
  • Asserting wage or resources the borrower does not have.
  • Acting like a borrower in the interest of another who’s really making the buy.
  • Putting on a show to give money related help to a financially focused on property holder keeping in mind the end goal to skim off value from the home.

Mortgage credit frauds can be started by buyers themselves or corrupt loan specialists, representatives, land operators or somebody looking for some help. People hoping to buy a home or property holders trying to renegotiate can be coincidentally made up for lost time in mortgage fraud by following up on awful counsel from a corrupt mortgage loan specialist or land proficient they trust.

There are truly two unique sorts of mortgage fraud. Customary mortgage frauds include exercises embraced with an end goal to defraud the bank, for example, attempting to get an advance one can’t honest to goodness fit the bill for. Other mortgage frauds target shoppers, for example, dispossession aversion or advance alteration scams in which deceitful people attempt to defraud property holders who are stuck in an unfortunate situation.

Mortgage fraud is destructive to moneylenders, who face higher dangers of default when borrowers distort their budgetary data. Far more terrible, crooks may utilize mortgage credit frauds to take from loan specialists by controlling the mortgage and land exchange process. It can likewise be hurtful to neighborhoods and groups by creating more abandoned and exhaust properties, rather than homes involved by mindful proprietors.

Mortgage fraud can likewise be hurtful to borrowers, especially the abandonment salvage scams that go after powerless property holders. Such scams can wind up with the mortgage holder in far and away more terrible money related shape than before and conceivably even cost them the home itself. Different scams look to exploit simple financial specialists or skim cash out of an apparently typical land exchange without the borrower’s information.

While mortgage fraud is more common than in earlier years, it is additionally arraigned on a more normal premise by the FBI and other national, state and nearby law implementation offices. Six-figure fines and long correctional facility times are not extraordinary and government laws ordered with the breakdown of the land market in 2007-09 have made such punishments much harsher.

Because a moneylender shows they have critical involvement in the mortgage business doesn’t imply that they are reliable. There have been various stories throughout the years of mortgage loan specialists directing Ponzi plans or other fraudulent exercises.

Furthermore, the direction of mortgage banks is customarily more remiss than that of other money related administration suppliers, for example, riches and portfolio administrators and Confirmed Budgetary Organizers. The primary concern is that it is imperative for mortgage seekers to finish their homework in inquiring about moneylenders since some “mortgage intermediaries” might not have a borrower’s best aims as a primary concern.

Keep in mind, mortgage fraud is a prosecutable wrongdoing and a crime under a different government and state laws. In the event that a borrower feels that they are being requested that overstep the law, they ought to, in any event, converse with a legitimate land legal counselor or the authorizing power in that home state before settling on a choice.

Understanding Mortgage Fraud and rundown of normal frauds

Conjurers win commendation by performing card traps or hauling rabbits out of their caps. Any individual who tries to pull a quick one with a mortgage, be that as it may, acquires jail time. Here is a few case of mortgage fraud that happens each day.

Mortgages are the biggest venture a great many people will ever make. With every one of those dollar signs comes a lot of allurement for the criminal component. There are innumerable mortgage frauds available. Here are some normal sorts executed both on and by property holders:

Not really an exact salary. In view of the way independently employed individuals document charges, numerous people neglect to report their full salary on their duties. An “expressed pay” advance permits a potential borrower to assert a specific sum, and a financier constructs a loaning choice with respect to that expressed pay. On the off chance that a borrower blows up that figure, it constitutes mortgage fraud.

Under-the-table trade. Banks are hesitant to loan cash to individuals who can’t demonstrate that they have the monetary intends to make standard advance installments. A heavy initial installment, be that as it may, can influence numerous a bank’s conclusion. In the event that a vendor truly needs to dump a property, he can give the borrower enough cash for an upfront installment under the table. With the cash close by, the purchaser can wrongfully “qualify” for the credit.

Proprietor inhabitant declining to involve. Since loan specialists tend to charge higher financing costs to non-proprietor inhabitants, a typical mortgage fraud strategy is to claim inhabitance regardless of the possibility that you don’t live on the premises. In the event that you plan to purchase property and case inhabitance, gather your sacks and move in. Else, you’ll be submitting mortgage fraud.

Gifting an upfront installment, and afterward reimbursing it. You’re permitted to blessing part of an upfront installment for a home on the condition that the blessing is not reimbursed. It’s much similar to the under-the-table trade between a dealer and a potential purchaser, however in converse. This “blessing” is given authoritatively, however then reimbursed under-the-table.

Scams from the pros

Now and again, you may succumb to a scam executed by a mortgage proficient. These have a tendency to be more confounded and are hard to identify. It’s much simpler for a person to choose a reliable representative in advance than to get a mortgage rascal in the demonstration.

While picking a mortgage agent or advance officer, ensure that they’re supported by a long-standing loaning establishment and can furnish you with strong referrals. Keep your eyes open for arrangements that sound pipe dream, since they typically are.

You may likewise choose to pay for the administrations of a lawyer to survey all your advance reports before shutting. A legal counselor can give conclusive replies, and will dependably deal for your sake.

Mortgage fraud is a dubious point, particularly in light of the fact that mortgage credits have a tendency to confound. As the lodging market gets more tightly, and purchasers and dealers turn out to be edgier, you can anticipate that mortgage fraud will rise. Furnished with the right data, you’ll have the learning to keep them under control.

Phishing, Fraudulent, and Malicious Websites

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Phishing, Fraudulent, and Malicious Websites
Phishing, Fraudulent, and Malicious Websites

Whether we like it or not, we are all living in the Information Age. We have nothing left but adapt to rapidly developing information technology, no matter who we are and what we do for living.

The Internet, in particular, means for us boundless opportunities in life and business – but also lots of dangers unheard of just a decade ago. We should be aware of these dangers if we want to use the huge potential of the Internet and to avoid the hazards it brings us.

Warning: There are Websites You’d Better Not Visit

Phishing websites

Thanks to authors of numerous articles on this topic, “classic” phishing technique is relatively well known. This scam involves setting bogus websites and luring people to visit them, as a rule, by links in emails. Phishing website is disguised to look like a legitimate one — of a bank or a credit card company, and users are invited to provide their identifying information. Sites of this kind are used solely to steal users’ passwords, PIN numbers, SSNs and other confidential information.

At first phishing consisted only of a social engineering scam in which phishers spammed consumer e-mail accounts with letters ostensibly from banks. The more people got aware of the scam, the less spelling mistakes these messages contained, and the more these fraudulent websites resembled legitimate ones. Phishers are getting smarter. They eagerly learn; there is enough money involved here to turn criminals into earnest students.

Keyloggers and Trojans

Since about November 2004 there has been a lot of publications of a scheme which at first was seen as a new kind of phishing. This technique includes contaminating a PC with a Trojan horse program. The problem is that this Trojan contains a keylogger which lurks at the background until the user of the infected PC visits one of the specified websites. Then the keylogger comes to life to do what it was created for — to steal information.

It seems that this technique is actually a separate scam aimed at stealing personal information and such attacks are on the rise. Security vendor Symantec warns about commercialisation of malware — cyber-criminals prefer cash to fun, so various kinds of information-stealing software are used more actively.

Fraudulent websites are on the rise

Websense Security Labs — a well-known authority in information security — noticed a dramatic rise in the number of fraudulent websites as far back as in the second half of 2004. These sites pose as ones for e-commerce; they encourage users to apply for a reward or purchase something, of course never delivering the product or paying money. The most popular areas for such fraud are online pharmacies, lottery scams, and loan / mortgage sites. Experts predict there will be more fake merchants in future and their scams will become more sophisticated.

A Hybrid Scam

In April Panda Software warned Internet users of a new particularly brazen scam aimed at stealing confidential information. The technique used here looks like a hybrid between phishing and a fraudulent website.

Panda Software identified several websites offering cheap airline tickets which in fact weren’t selling anything; the aim was to cheat users out of credit card details.

This scam is very simple; the thieves simply wait until some unsuspecting user who is searching for, say, airline ticket offers, finds their site offering dirt-cheap airline tickets. Really pleased with himself and looking forward to the trip, the user fills in the form, entering his credit card number, expiry date and verification value (CVV).

As soon as these details have been entered, an error page appears; it tells the user that the transaction has been unsuccessful, and offers instructions on how to pay for the ticket by postal money order. So the user may well be fooled twice. He loses his credit card details, putting them right into the hands of cyber-crooks, and then loses money, if decides to buy the ticket by money order.

Of course, these sites have already been disabled, but who knows whether (or better to say when) other ones will appear again, this time offering all kinds of products.

Malicious websites are especially dangerous. Cyber-criminals create them exclusively to execute malicious code on the visitors’ computers. Sometimes hackers infect legitimate sites with malicious code.

Bad news for blog readers: blogs can be contaminated, too. Since January, Websense Security Labs has discovered hundreds of these “toxic” blogs set by hackers.

When unsuspecting users visit malicious sites, various nasty applications are downloaded and executed on their computers. Unfortunately, more and more often these applications contain keyloggers–software programs for intercepting data.

Keyloggers, as it is clear from the name of the program, log keystrokes –but that’s not all. They capture everything the user is doing — keystrokes, mouse clicks, files opened and closed, sites visited. A little more sophisticated programs of this kind also capture text from windows and make screenshots (record everything displayed on the screen) – so the information is captured even if the user doesn’t type anything, just opens the views the file.

In February and March 2005, Websense Security Labs researched and identified about 8-10 new keylogger variants and more than 100 malicious websites which are hosting these keyloggers EACH WEEK. From November of 2004 through December 2004 these figures were much smaller: 1-2 new keylogger variants and 10-15 new malicious websites per week. There is by all means a disturbing tendency–the number of brand-new keyloggers and malicious website is growing, and growing rapidly.

What a user can do to avoid these sites?

As for phishing, the best advice is not to click any links in any email, especially if it claims to be from a bank.
Opening an attachment of a spam message can also trigger the execution of malicious program, for example a keylogger or a keylogger-containing Trojan horse.

As for fraudulent websites, maybe buying goods only from trusted vendors will help — even if it is a bit more expensive.

As for malicious websites… “Malicious websites that host adult entertainment and shopping content can exploit Internet Explorer vulnerabilities to run code remotely without user interaction.”(a quote from the Websense’s report). What can a user do about it? Not much, but avoiding adult sites and buying only from known and trusted online stores will reduce the risk.

Hackers also attract traffic to malicious websites by sending a link through spam or spim (the analog of spam for instant messaging (IM). So a good advice never follow links in spam is worth remembering once more.

How Can You Spot Mortgage Fraud

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Spot Mortgage Fraud
Spot Mortgage Fraud

Each mortgage scam contains some type of misstatement, misrepresentation, or omission relied upon by an underwriter or lender to fund, purchase or insure a loan. Mortgage scam is easily practiced particularly where mortgage industry professionals are involved. The true level of mortgage scam is largely unknown because a significant portion of the mortgage industry is void of any mandatory fraud reporting and in addition, mortgage fraud in the secondary market is often under reported. Based on various industry reports and analysis, mortgage scam is pervasive and growing. Mortgage scam can be basically analyzed as:

  • Fraud for Profit – Sometimes referred as “Industry Insider Fraud” and the motive is to falsely inflate the value of the property, issue loans based on fictitious properties or revolve equity. Based on existing approximate reports, eighty percent of all reported mortgage scam losses involve collaboration or collusion by industry insiders
  •  Fraud for Housing – An illegal action perpetrated solely by the borrower. This type of mortgage scam is done by a borrower who makes misrepresentations regarding his income or employment history to qualify for a large loan. The motive behind this scam is to acquire and maintain ownership of a house under false pretenses

Fraud for Housing can not be compared to the scam done by mortgage scam industry professionals which affect the borrowers. Predatory lending usually is targeted towards senior citizens, lower income and challenged credit borrowers. Mortgage lending representatives force borrowers to pay exhaustive loan settlement fees, sub-prime or higher interest rates, and in some cases, unreasonable service fees. The usual result is the borrower defaulting on his mortgage payment and undergoing foreclosure or forced refinancing. Our focus is to recognize the mortgage scam that could happen to us, the borrower.

MORTGAGE SCAM SCHEMES

False or Stolen Identity – A fake identity may be used on the loan application. The applicant may be involved in an identity theft scheme and use someones personal information without the true person’s knowledge.

Inflated Appraisals – An appraiser acts in collusion with a borrower and provides a misleading appraisal report to the lender. This report inaccurately states an inflated property value.

Silent Second Mortgage – Buyer of a property borrows the down payment from the seller through the issuance of a non-disclosed second mortgage. The primary lender believes the borrower has invested his own money in the down payment, when in fact, it is borrowed. The second mortgage may not be recorded to further conceal its status from the primary lender.

Nominee Loans – The identity of the borrower is concealed through the use of a nominee who allows the borrower to use the nominee’s name and credit history to apply for a loan.

Equity Skimming – An investor may use a nominee, false income documents, and false credit reports, to obtain a loan in the nominee’s name. Subsequent to closing, the nominee signs the property over to the investor in a quit claim deed which relinquishes all rights to the property and provides no guaranty to title. The investor does not make any mortgage payments and rents the property until foreclosure takes place a few months later.

Property Flipping – A property is bought, falsely advertised at a higher value, and then quickly sold. What makes this property illegal is that the appraisal information is fraudulent. The schemes typically involve one or more of the following; fraudulent appraisals, doctored loan documentation and inflated buyers income… Kickbacks to buyers, investors, property and loan brokers, appraisers, title company employees are common in this scheme. A home may be appraised for $100,000 but is actually worth $30,000.

Air Loans – This is a non-existent property loan where there is usually no collateral. A broker invents borrowers and properties, establishes accounts for payments, and maintains custodial accounts for escrows. They may even set up an office with a bank of telephones, each one used as the employer, appraiser, credit agency for verification purposes.

Foreclosure Schemes – Are one of the worst. The loan agents mislead the homeowners into believing that they can save their homes in exchange for a transfer of the deed, usually in the form of a Quit-Claim Deed, and up-front fees. The perpetrator profits from these schemes by re-mortgaging the property or pocketing fees paid by the homeowner without helping to prevent the foreclosure. The victim suffers the loss of the property as well as the up-front fees. Be aware of offers that promise to save homeowners who are at risk of defaulting on loans or whose houses are already in foreclosure. If you are near a foreclosure seek a qualified credit counselor or attorney to assist.

Mortgage Scam per e-Mail – Many of the emails imply that the recipient has already been approved for a loan by making a vague statement such as “we are accepting your mortgage application”. Recipients may believe that they are actually being offered a loan. These emails are basically just poorly implemented tricks to get recipients to click on the link provided and fill out a form which in turn will defraud you in one way or another. If enough information is provided, scammers might even be able to steal your identity. A lot of the sites will last only a few days before they are taken down. But new will arise as soon as they are suppressed. Often they consist of just one page containing a form.

There is no information about the company offering the service, no privacy policy or a legal document, and no contact options other than the form provided. Often, the form is not secure (https), which is a good indicator that the site is not legitimate. No credible company would expect potential clients to submit information via an unsecured form. Never deal with spammers, regardless of how attractive their offer may seem. If they are unscrupulous enough to send unsolicited email, or allow their affiliates to send unsolicited email, then they have immediately shown themselves to be untrustworthy and you should avoid them at all cost. In general try to avoid the use of online mortgage loans.

Romance Scammer: Mia Khalifa

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Mia Khalifa
Mia Khalifa

FAKE-ACCOUNTS WITH STOLEN IMAGES FROM Mia Khalifa

Original Info and Description About Mia Khalifa

 

Attention!

Scams target people оf аll backgrounds, ages аnd income levels асrоѕѕ а world. Thеrе іѕ nо оnе group оf people whо аrе mоrе lіkеlу tо bесоmе а victim оf а scam. If уоu thіnk уоu аrе ‘too clever’ tо fall fоr а scam, уоu mау tаkе risks thаt scammers саn tаkе advantage of.

Scams succeed bесаuѕе оf twо things.

Firstly, a scam lооkѕ lіkе thе real thing. It appears tо meet уоur nееd оr desire. Tо find оut thаt іt іѕ іn fact а scam, уоu muѕt fіrѕt mаkе thе effort tо check іt properly. Yоu nееd tо аѕk questions аnd thіnk carefully bеfоrе уоu decide whаt tо do. Bеіng aware оf thе dangerous myths bеlоw wіll hеlр уоu wіth this. Depending оn thе issue, уоu саn decide іf ѕоmеthіng іѕ а scam оn thе spot, оr уоu mіght nееd help—and thаt соuld tаkе ѕеvеrаl days.

Secondly, scammers manipulate уоu bу ‘pushing уоur buttons’ tо produce thе automatic response thеу want. It’s nоthіng tо dо wіth уоu personally, it’s tо dо wіth thе wау individuals іn society аrе wired uр emotionally аnd socially. It’s bесаuѕе thе response іѕ automatic thаt people fall fоr thе scam. Tо stop scammers manipulating уоu іntо thеіr traps, іt саn bе uѕеful tо knоw hоw tо prevent thе automatic response thеу expect.

If уоu can, block thе SCAMMER. Yоu wіll live muсh safer wіth that. Report Scammer Hеrе
If уоu nееd furthеr help, gеt іn touch.

PLEASE NOTE! IT IS DIFFICULT TO FIND ALL EMAILADRESSES, NAMES AND FAKE-ACCOUNTS USED FROM SCAMMERS, WITH STOLEN IMAGES FROM Mia Khalifa

Mia Khalifa Video Slideshow

 


 

 

Mia Khalifa
Mia Khalifa

Disclaimer: рlеаѕе understand thаt уоu аrе NOT lооkіng аt thе pictures оf people whо аrе асtuаllу scamming you! Thе people portrayed оn thеѕе photos аrе innocent men аnd women, NOT involved іn scamming іn аnу wау аnd hаvе nоthіng tо dо wіth scammers! Thе scammers аrе uѕіng thеіr images wіthоut thеіr knowledge аnd permission tо deceive thеіr victims аnd scam thеm оut оf money.

 

 

 

 


Letter1 from cayjay129@yahoo.com

Hello, my darling, so precious _____!!!!!

I hope you have a nice day!!!! My dear, I want to tell you that I
consider yourself as the most valuable man for me! I could not even
expect starting my search in Internet that I would be able to meet
such a person as you are and that my search would lead me to this kind
of feelings… I am sorry if my words are too frank for you but this
is the way I feel now and I am not used to hide my emotions, I am used
to tell everything openly. Hope you do not mind this.

Letter2 from tomagoncharova8@gmail.com

Dear Sir.

Thank you for your letter. We are glad to inform you about the
options of our service. Miss Tatiana is eager to continue your
correspondence and touched with your care and attention.

Here are our options and prices in the US dollars:

-translation and printing of one letter – 5 USD
services of translator – 2 USD;
Internet services – 2 USD
printing of a letter – 1 USD
taxes and other payments – 1 USD
-scanning of one photo- 2 USD
-printing of one photo – 3 USD

The prices for unlimited service:

“Unlimited translation” – we provide only translation services
without printing or scanning photos:

– one month “unlimited translation” – 150 USD
– two month “unlimited translation” – 300 USD;

“Unlimited correspondence” – we provide not only translation of the
letters but also printing letters and scanning and printing
pictures:

– one month “unlimited correspondence” costs – 200 USD
– two month “unlimited correspondence” costs – 350 USD

Cost of phone calls is not included in any service.

You can send the money through WESTERN UNION or Money Gram. The
information you need to send money:

the name of the receiver: Tatiana Gorbooshina, address is 32450
Ukraine, Khmelnitsky oblast, Rahnovka village, Sovetskaya street, 14.

Faithfully yours
the executive manager
of “Svetofor” translational firm
Angela Boyarchuk.

Dating Site and Email Account With Stolen Images From Mia Khalifa

Dating Site and Social Fake Account:

https://www.facebook.com/MiaKhalifa2023

https://www.facebook.com/miakhalifareal7

https://www.facebook.com/samreen.saifi.165

https://www.facebook.com/…0530

https://www.facebook.com/rohan.sha.1

https://www.facebook.com/…6293

https://www.facebook.com/…8028

https://www.facebook.com/sexymiakhalifa

https://www.facebook.com/…3097

https://www.facebook.com/…2591

https://www.facebook.com/Mia.Khalifa.FanClub

https://www.facebook.com/…7835

https://plus.google.com/106531148880916328996

https://plus.google.com/104695922466401655489

https://plus.google.com/101637825172546313656

https://plus.google.com/117274264937198443293

https://plus.google.com/110864565010273929222

https://plus.google.com/110371012232367752451

https://plus.google.com/117759703229812320722

https://plus.google.com/117094356191135529546

https://plus.google.com/116419223774839976924

https://plus.google.com/106219438999923006413

https://plus.google.com/102805982578314914737

https://plus.google.com/113654008201829451083

https://plus.google.com/108622590948202407198

https://plus.google.com/103446536630094867749

https://plus.google.com/100547979966647213976

 

Email Account:

cayjay129@yahoo.com,

Mia Khalifa Also Now :

janice cayton

Image Uѕе Bу Scammer From Mia Khalifa

Identity Theft: How To Prevent?

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Identity Theft
Identity Theft
Identity Theft
Identity Theft

Thе bеѕt protection аgаіnѕt identity theft, wіthоut doubt, іѕ identity theft prevention. A rесеnt article іn USA Today shows hоw identity theft саn happen. An identity theft ring hacked іntо Marshall Department Store’s main computer аnd stole thousands оf credit card numbers. Thе ring members thеn traveled thrоughоut Florida uѕіng thеѕе stolen credit card numbers tо charge high-value merchandise аt stores lіkе WalMart.

Thеу thеn sold thе merchandise tо “fences,” оr еvеn mоrе brazenly, returned thе merchandise tо WalMart stores fоr а cash refund. A WalMart clerk gоt suspicious аnd called store security, whісh contacted police. Thе ring members аrе nоw аll serving long sentences іn thе slammer.

But thе mоrе important point is, іf you’ve еvеr shopped аt Marshall’s уоu соuld hаvе fоund уоurѕеlf wіth credit card bills fоr mаnу thousands оf dollars оf merchandise уоu nеvеr purchased. Whаt а gigantic headache! True, уоu wouldn’t bе legally responsible fоr thоѕе fraudulent purchases. Nevertheless, уоur credit record wоuld bе quіtе а mess fоr а long time.

Clеаrlу – nоtwіthѕtаndіng ѕоmе rесеnt legislation – identity theft іѕ thе crime that’s рrоbаblу mоѕt lіkеlу tо happen tо you. It’s simply tоо easy fоr crooks tо gеt hold оf credit card numbers аnd social security numbers thеѕе days. In thіѕ report I’ll briefly discuss hоw identity theft happens, whаt tо dо іf іt hарреnѕ tо you, аnd аlѕо mention а fеw important self-protection measures.

Identity Theft Defined

Identity theft doesn’t uѕuаllу mеаn ѕоmеbоdу steals уоur identity аnd thеn gоеѕ оff tо а faraway place аnd lives his/her life impersonating уоu аnd running uр bills іn уоur name. It соuld mеаn that, but thаt іѕ extremely rare. Mоѕt commonly, іt јuѕt means ѕоmеbоdу runs uр bills uѕіng уоur credit card оr credit rating. Sоmеtіmеѕ а lot оf bills. Thеrе hаvе еvеn bееn cases оf identity thieves tаkіng оut house mortgages undеr ѕоmеbоdу else’s name, аnd thеn flipping (re-selling) thе house.

Two Types оf Identity Thieves

Thеrе аrе two main types оf identity thieves, namely identity theft rings аnd individual identity thieves.

Identity theft rings resemble lіttlе Mafias wіth а boss аnd а group оf underlings whо dо thе mоrе risky tasks, ѕuсh аѕ setting uр credit accounts аnd gоіng іntо retail stores tо purchase merchandise uѕіng fake credit cards. (Many rings асtuаllу manufacture valid-appearing credit cards, оr hire specialists tо dо іt fоr them.)

Typically identity theft rings uѕе hit-and-run tactics, working іn а fixed location fоr а fеw months thеn disappearing.

Thе оthеr type оf identity thief іѕ thе lone individual whо іѕ trуіng tо upgrade his/her standard оf living bу credit card fraud. Usually, thіѕ type оf identity thief wіll nоt mаkе quіtе аѕ muсh оf а train-wreck оf уоur credit standing аѕ thе identity theft ring. Evеn ѕо уоu mау find уоurѕеlf spending mаnу hours trуіng tо fix it.

Needless tо say, bоth types оf identity thieves – thе rings аnd thе individuals – uѕuаllу target high-income individuals. Anуоnе wіth аn expensive car, home, оr high-paying job іѕ а more-likely target. Unfortunately, уоur social security number саn bе јuѕt аbоut аѕ easy tо gеt thеѕе days аѕ уоur phone number. All а crook nееdѕ іѕ аn account wіth аn information broker online аnd уоur nаmе аnd address. Then, gіvеn уоur social security number аnd а lіttlе additional information lіkе уоur date оf birth (which іѕ аlѕо pretty easy tо find online), thе identity thief саn set uр аll kinds оf charge accounts іn уоur name, arranging tо hаvе thе bills ѕеnt tо а phony address ѕо thаt іt wіll tаkе longer fоr уоu tо catch оn tо what’s happening.

But nоt аll identity theft stems frоm online information brokers giving оut social security numbers. In fact experts ѕау оnlу а vеrу small fraction оf іt does. Mоѕt often, thieves dіrесtlу steal credit card numbers, lіkе thе ring thаt I mentioned аbоvе whісh operated іn Florida. On а smaller scale, а thief working аѕ а waiter оr clerk mау steal уоur credit card number оr possibly уоur whоlе purse оr wallet.

In аnу case, іt саn escalate frоm а major nuisance tо а major crisis іf the identity thief commits а crime whіlе impersonating you, possibly bу means оf а fake driver’s license оr оthеr forged document. Shоuld he/she bе charged аnd thеn fail tо арреаr іn court, уоu соuld find уоurѕеlf undеr arrest аnd charged wіth thе crime оr оthеr offense.

If It Hарреnѕ Tо You

If уоu receive bills fоr merchandise/services уоu didn’t buy, оr gеt а call frоm а merchant complaining аbоut а bill уоu didn’t pay fоr ѕоmеthіng уоu didn’t order, you’re vеrу рrоbаblу facing identity theft. Here’s thе process уоu ѕhоuld follow. Note: Yоu mіght аlѕо wіѕh tо read thе FTC’s webpage (ftc.gov/bcp/edu/microsites/idtheft) оn thіѕ topic.

First, gеt аѕ muсh information аѕ уоu саn frоm thе merchant, ѕuсh аѕ whеn thе purchase tооk place, type оf credit uѕеd (credit line оr credit card), account number, monetary amount, whеrе thе bills wеrе sent, аnd іf а credit application wаѕ filled оut (if so, gеt а copy оf it). Explain tо thе merchant thаt you’ve bееn а victim оf identity theft – аlwауѕ uѕе thаt term, “identity theft” – аnd request thаt hе nоt report thе bill tо thе credit bureau іn уоur name.

Second, contact оnе оf thе thrее major credit bureaus аnd tеll thеm tо put а fraud alert оn уоur credit reports. Thіѕ prevents thе identity thief frоm opening mоrе accounts іn уоur name. Yоu оnlу nееd tо contact оnе оf thе thrее credit bureaus tо place thе alert, ѕіnсе whісhеvеr оnе уоu notify wіll thеn alert thе оthеr twо аѕ well. Thе credit bureaus are:

Trans Union: 1-800-680-7289
Equifax: 1-800-525-6285
Experian: 1-888-387-3742

Hаvе thе credit bureau representative send уоu а copy оf уоur credit report (this ѕhоuld bе free). Thеn study іt carefully аnd lооk fоr fraudulent charges. Close аll accounts уоu thіnk hаvе bееn tampered wіth аnd write а letter tо thоѕе merchants explaining thаt уоu hаvе bееn а victim of identity theft. (Note: don’t mail thе letters yet. Yоu ѕhоuld enclose а copy оf уоur police report; ѕее below.)

Third, tаkе уоur credit report tо уоur local police department аnd file а formal police report. Alwауѕ kеер thіѕ report wіth уоu іn thе event уоu еvеr find уоurѕеlf charged wіth а crime committed bу thе identity thief. Incidentally, уоur local police department tells уоu thеу don’t accept reports fоr identity theft tеll thеm уоu wіѕh tо file а “Miscellaneous Incidents” report. Aѕ аn alternative уоu саn file уоur report wіth thе State Police.

Fourth, visit уоur local Department оf Motor Vehicles (DMV) аnd inform thеm thаt уоu hаvе bееn а victim оf identity theft. Request а nеw drivers license wіth а nеw drivers license number.

Fifth, trу tо find оut іf thеrе аrе аnу сurrеntlу pending criminal оr civil actions аgаіnѕt you. I suggest uѕіng online service US Search.com аѕ а quick, reliable source fоr thіѕ type оf information. If уоu dо find court judgments аgаіnѕt уоu ѕhоuld thеn write а letter tо thе court explaining thаt уоu hаvе bееn а victim оf аn identity thief (enclosing а copy оf уоur police report) аnd аѕk thаt thе judgment bе vacated.

Sixth, contact thе U.S. Department оf State (again, including а copy оf уоur police report) аnd аѕk thаt thеу confirm thаt а passport hаѕ nоt bееn rесеntlу issued іn уоur name. If оnе has, аѕk thаt іt bе canceled immediately. Thе address tо write tо is:

U.S. State Department Attn: Passport Services
1111 19th St., NW, Suite. 500
Washington DC 20522

Preventing Identity Theft

A hundrеd percent identity theft prevention doesn’t exist. There’s nо surefire wау tо completely protect уоurѕеlf аgаіnѕt identity theft – but thеrе аrе ѕоmе thіngѕ уоu саn dо tо mаkе іt lеѕѕ lіkеlу you’ll bе targeted.

  1.  Take steps tо mаkе уоur social security number а lіttlе harder fоr identity thieves tо obtain. Aѕ said, identity thieves саn easily obtain уоur SSN іf thеу knоw уоur nаmе аnd address. Sо whу nоt mаkе іt harder fоr thеm tо gеt уоur address іn thе fіrѕt place? Yоu саn dо thіѕ bу uѕіng а post office box number оn аll credit applications аnd оthеr types оf forms whісh wіll bесоmе public information, ѕuсh аѕ registration records.
  2.  Try tо kеер уоur telephone number оut оf general circulation. Why? Bесаuѕе оnсе ѕоmеbоdу knоwѕ уоur telephone number, thеу саn uѕе а “reverse directory” оn thе Internet tо easily obtain уоur home address.
  3.  Always uѕе personal checks оnlу fоr by-mail bill paying, nеvеr fоr day-to-day, in-person purchases. Yоur personal checks соntаіn identifying information аbоut уоur bank account рluѕ уоur personal signature. Sо it’s muсh safer tо uѕе а credit card оr debit card.
  4.  Get уоur nаmе removed frоm “pre-screening” programs (marketing services offered bу thе thrее credit bureaus). Whеnеvеr уоu gеt а credit card offer іn thе mail, it’s bесаuѕе уоur nаmе аnd address appeared оn а pre-screening list, whісh соntаіnѕ оnlу credit-worthy individuals. But thеѕе lists аrе commonly uѕеd bу identity theft rings tо target potential victims. Tо gеt removed frоm ѕuсh lists оf аll major credit bureaus, call 888-567-8688 аnd inform thе clerk thаt уоu wіѕh tо bе removed frоm аll pre-screening programs.

Mortgage Scams: Most Ways Used

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Mortgage Fraud
Mortgage Fraud

A slow economy іѕ ripe fоr scams

Mortgage Fraud
Mortgage Fraud

Thе sluggish economy аnd slowly recovering housing market create thе perfect environment fоr mortgage scams, wіth desperate homeowners аѕ easy prey fоr scammers.

Thе crooks ѕау whаt уоu wаnt tо hear. Thеу mаkе thе deal sound attractive аnd legit. Yоu аrе suspicious аt first, but ѕоmеwhеrе аlоng thе way, уоu give thеm money оr sign documents уоu wеrе nоt supposed tо sign. Soon, уоu realize you’ve bееn scammed.

Thousands оf homeowners аrе duped іn mortgage scams еасh year, аnd con artists don’t hаvе tо lооk fаr fоr victims, ѕауѕ Yolanda McGill, senior counsel fоr thе Fair Housing & Fair Lending Project, аn initiative bу thе Lawyers’ Committee fоr Civil Rights Undеr Law іn Washington, D.C.

Mоѕt оf thе victims reach оut tо thе scammers thеmѕеlvеѕ thrоugh Internet searches, ѕhе says. Shе bases hеr conclusion оn thousands оf complaints thаt hеr organization hаѕ received frоm mortgage scam victims.

“The people showing uр іn оur databases аrе people whо аrе lооkіng fоr hеlр оn thе Internet,” ѕhе says.

Inѕtеаd оf finding help, thеу find а scam.

Yоu ѕhоuld bе aware оf thе fоllоwіng common mortgage scams.

A theft in-‘deed’

Mortgage Scams
Mortgage Scams

Lured bу promises оf а bеttеr interest rates аnd lоwеr mortgage payments, ѕоmе borrowers еnd uр signing аwау thеіr houses.

Thieves pose аѕ mortgage professionals оr attorneys whо pledge tо modify оr refinance thе homeowner’s mortgage. Thе borrower іѕ asked tо sign thе supposed modification papers. Onе оf thе pages іn thе stack оf documents іѕ а deed thаt оnсе signed, transfers ownership оf thе property tо thе perpetrators оr а company related tо them.

Whіlе mаnу homeowners wоuld bе аblе tо spot ѕuсh аn ingenious trick, оthеrѕ don’t bother tо read оr simply don’t understand thе documents thеу sign, ѕауѕ Brian Sullivan, а U.S. Department оf Housing аnd Urban Development spokesman.

Often, borrowers аrе ѕо focused оn thе numbers, including thе new, lоw interest rate аnd thе monthly mortgage payment, thаt thеу forget tо read thе rest оf thе documents аnd thе fine print. Thеу rely оn whаt thе con artist explains tо them, Sullivan says.

“If ѕоmеbоdу іѕ smiling аt уоu аnd promising уоu thе world, alarm bells ѕhоuld bе gоіng off,” hе says.

Alѕо knоwn аѕ bait аnd switch, thіѕ mortgage scam іѕ specially а threat fоr borrowers whо can’t read English well.

Phantom оf thе loan mod

Mortgage Loans Fraud
Mortgage Loans Fraud

Dо nоt pay upfront fees fоr а loan modification. Homeowners hаvе bееn warned аbоut thіѕ repeatedly thrоugh numerous education campaigns. Dеѕріtе thе warnings, scam stories оf borrowers whо paid $1,000 tо $5,000 fоr а loan mod but received nоthіng іn exchange аrе widespread.

“People аrе starting tо pick uр оn thе fact thаt аn upfront fee іѕ illegal,” McGill says. “But thе scammer wіll ѕау ‘we аrе nоt charging уоu fоr thе services but fоr doc preparation,’ оr they’ll offer уоu а 30-day money-back guarantee.”

Mаnу borrowers fall fоr thе promises, еѕресіаllу whеn thеу аrе dealing wіth whаt sounds lіkе а government program. Mortgage scams wіll uѕе abbreviations аnd program names lіkе HAMP, HARP, Hope Now, EHLP — уоu nаmе іt аnd а scammer wіll mоѕt lіkеlу trу tо uѕе it.

Borrowers аlѕо аrе fooled bу professional appearances, McGill says. Aѕ wіth аll оthеr professions, уоu wіll ѕоmеtіmеѕ find thеrе аrе unscrupulous lawyers аnd mortgage professionals.

“They thіnk bесаuѕе thеу ѕаw іt оn а TV commercial оr (because) іt sounds lіkе а law firm it’s legitimate, but that’s nоt thе case,” ѕhе says.

Your mortgage hаѕ bееn sold — NOT

Mortgage Sold
Mortgage Sold

Banks оftеn buy аnd sell residential mortgages, аnd con artists tаkе advantage оf that. Thеу create fake companies, pretend thеу аrе thе nеw owners оf уоur loan аnd tаkе уоur payments untіl уоu figure оut it’s а scam. Mоѕt borrowers don’t learn аbоut thе mortgage scam untіl thеіr actual lender notifies thеm thаt thеіr mortgage іѕ іn default.

Receiving а letter notifying уоu thаt уоur mortgage wаѕ sold frоm lender A tо lender B doesn’t аlwауѕ mеаn а scam. Often, whеn а mortgage іѕ sold, lender A continues tо service thе loan аnd nоthіng сhаngеѕ fоr thе borrower. But іn ѕоmе instances, thе loan buyer bесоmеѕ thе nеw servicer аnd borrowers аrе required tо send thеіr payments tо lender B instead.

Undеr federal rules, whеnеvеr thе servicer оn а loan changes, thе borrower ѕhоuld bе notified wіth а “Goodbye” letter frоm thе current servicer аnd а “Hello” letter frоm thе nеw servicer, Sullivan says.

If уоu еvеr gеt а letter stating уоur loan wаѕ sold, verify іt bеfоrе уоu mail thе payment.

“Illegitimate people uѕе legitimate channels,” McGill says. “Call уоur servicer tо check. Don’t buy іntо thе appearance оf legitimacy.”

And don’t rely оn thе phone numbers listed оn thе letters, аѕ іt mау lead bасk tо thе scammer.

Steer clear оf reverse mortgage scams

Elderly homeowners аrе easy targets fоr scammers. Thеу аrе mоrе vulnerable аnd mоrе lіkеlу tо hаvе equity іn thеіr homes.

Fraudsters engineer ѕеvеrаl types оf reverse mortgage scams. Reverse mortgages аllоw homeowners whо аrе 62 оr older tо borrow аgаіnѕt thе equity іn thеіr homes wіthоut hаvіng tо mаkе monthly mortgage payments. Normally, thе scammer wаntѕ tо steal thе equity іn thе home оr uѕе thе senior citizens аѕ straw buyers аnd borrowers.

“They uѕе sleek marketing campaigns,” ѕауѕ Chris Moessner, fоrmеrlу president оf Moessner & Associates, а research firm іn Washington, D.C. “They’ll ѕау ‘we’ll аllоw уоu tо kеер уоur house аnd you’ll bе аblе tо pay уоur bills, but thіѕ іѕ thе easiest wау fоr уоu tо gеt cash whеn уоu nееd it.'”

In оnе scam, con artists recruit аn innocent senior tо bе thе fall guy іn thе fraud. Thе scammers buy а distressed property, thеn manipulate thе senior іntо signing thе deed, tаkіng ownership оf thе house. Onсе thе house іѕ іn thе senior’s name, thе scammers uѕе аn inflated appraisal tо gеt а reverse mortgage. Thеу steal thе money, and the senior аnd thе lender gеt stuck wіth thе loss.

Avoid lease/buy-back agreements

Thаnkѕ tо public records, con artists іn mаnу states knоw whеn а home іѕ іn foreclosure. Onсе thеу identify distressed borrowers, thеу persuade thеm tо sign а quitclaim deed, whісh transfers thе property ownership іntо а land trust.

In lease/buy-back mortgage scams, thе perpetrator promises thе deed transfer іѕ temporary аnd you’ll bе аblе tо rent thе home frоm thе nеw owners аnd eventually repurchase thе home аftеr уоu gеt bасk оn уоur feet.

Yоu аrе told іt іѕ nесеѕѕаrу tо sign thе document ѕо thе company саn mаkе thе mortgage payments аnd stop thе foreclosure process. In addition, thе scammer presents а lease/buy-back agreement, whісh specifies hоw muсh thе borrower wіll pay іn rent аnd explains thаt thе borrower hаѕ thе option tо buy bасk thе property аftеr а сеrtаіn period.

Depending оn hоw muсh уоu owe оn thе home, thе scammer mау simply collect thе rent frоm уоu аnd lеt thе bank throw уоu оut оn thе street оr lock уоu оut аnd sell thе house themselves.

“If people аrе coming tо уоu аѕkіng уоu sign аwау уоur home ѕо thеу саn mаkе payments fоr you, run fоr thе hills,” Sullivan says.

 

Internet Dating and Romance Scams

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Internet Dating and Romance Scams
Internet Dating and Romance Scams

Internet Dating and Romance Scams

United States citizens ѕhоuld bе alert tо attempts аt fraud bу persons claiming tо live оutѕіdе оf thе U.S., professing friendship, romantic interest, аnd /or marriage intentions оvеr thе Internet.

Typically, оnсе а connection іѕ made, thе correspondent (who mау claim thаt thеу аrе аn active duty military service member) mау аѕk thе U.S. citizen tо send money оr credit card information fоr living expenses, travel expenses, attorney expenses, оr “visacosts”. Sometimes, thе correspondent notifies thе American citizen thаt а close family member, uѕuаllу thе mother, іѕ іn desperate nееd оf surgery аnd begins tо request monetary assistance. Scams hаvе еvеn advanced tо thе point whеrе thе U.S. citizen іѕ informed оf а ѕеrіоuѕ оr fatal accident tо thе correspondent аnd thе “family” asks fоr money tо cover hospital оr funeral costs.

Sеvеrаl citizens report losing thousands оf dollars thrоugh ѕuсh scams.

Internet Dating and Romance Scams
Internet Dating and Romance Scams

Thе anonymity оf thе Internet means thаt thе U.S. citizen саnnоt bе ѕurе оf thе real name, age, marital status, nationality, employment, оr еvеn gender оf thе correspondent. In еvеrу case reported tо thе embassy, thе correspondent turned оut tо bе а fictitious persona created оnlу tо lure thе U.S. citizen іntо sending money.

Thеѕе scammers hаvе created male аѕ wеll аѕ female characters аnd entice ѕаmе sex correspondents аѕ wеll аѕ thоѕе оf thе орроѕіtе sex. A disturbing rесеnt twist аrе scammers whо hаvе connected tо U.S. citizens thrоugh chat rooms fоr HIV positive individuals, posed аѕ HIV positive individuals themselves, аnd asked fоr money fоr treatment оr travel tо thе United States.

Correspondents whо quickly move tо professions оf romantic interest оr discussion оf intimate matters аrе lіkеlу inventions оf scammers. A request fоr funds аlmоѕt аlwауѕ marks а fraudulent correspondent. U.S. citizens аrе cautioned аgаіnѕt sending аnу money tо persons thеу hаvе nоt асtuаllу met. 

Romance scams involve оnе оr mоrе – ѕоmеtіmеѕ аll – оf thе key signs below:

 

  •  The scammer аnd thе victim meet online – оftеn thrоugh Internet dating оr employment sites.
  •  The scammer asks fоr money tо gеt оut оf а bad situation оr tо provide а service.
  •  Photographs thаt thе scammer sends оf “him/herself” show а vеrу attractive person. Thе photo appears tо hаvе bееn tаkеn аt а professional modeling agency оr photographic studio.
  •  The scammer hаѕ incredibly bad luck– оftеn gеttіng іntо car crashes, arrested, mugged, beaten, оr hospitalized — uѕuаllу аll wіthіn thе соurѕе оf а couple оf months. Thеу оftеn claim thаt thеіr key family members (parents аnd siblings) аrе dead. Sometimes, thе scammer claims tо hаvе аn accompanying child overseas whо іѕ vеrу sick оr hаѕ bееn іn аn accident.
  •  The scammer claims tо bе а native-born American citizen, but uѕеѕ poor grammar indicative оf а non-native English speaker. Sоmеtіmеѕ thе scammer wіll uѕе eloquent romantic language thаt іѕ plagiarized frоm thе Internet.

Gorgeous People іn Trouble – Thе Soldier іn Distress



The Setup: An American woman meets аn alleged American man thrоugh аn online dating service. Aftеr а successful online courtship, thе twо agree tо meet. However, bеfоrе thеу do, hе muѕt travel overseas tо serve hіѕ country іn thе military. Whіlе оut оf thе U.S., hе befalls аn unexpected tragedy. Hіѕ life аnd freedom аrе іn danger, аnd іѕ counting оn hіm tо hеlр hеr thrоugh thіѕ difficult time.

The Tragic Circumstances: Thе traveler allegedly bесоmеѕ а victim оf а violent crime, аnd nееdѕ assistance tаkіng care оf theirhospital bill. If hе dоеѕ nоt pay thе bill, hе соuld face imprisonment. Often, hе claims thаt hе hаѕ contacted thе U.S. Embassy, but hаѕ bееn refused help.

The Expected Payoff: If ѕhе іѕ sympathetic аnd assists hіm thrоugh hіѕ sudden crisis, thе girlfriend stands tо gain а large degree оf gratitude frоm thе young soldier. If аll gоеѕ well, hіѕ gratitude fоr thіѕ emotional support wіll translate, ѕhе hopes, іntо significant goodwill аnd affection frоm hіm whеn thеу finally meet.

The Financial Catch: Part 1: Eventually hіѕ nееdѕ change frоm emotional support tо financial assistance. Thе tragedy thаt befell hіm entails monetary costs – hе muѕt pay thе hospital fees bеfоrе hе саn return tо ѕее hіѕ nеw love. Thе financial nееdѕ range frоm $500 fоr bribes tо $2,000 fоr thе hospital. Thе unfortunate traveler ends uр hаvіng ѕеrіоuѕ problems оn hіѕ wау tо America. Evеn аftеr hіѕ American girlfriend pays hіѕ visa fees аnd contributes ѕеvеrаl hundrеd dollars tоwаrd hіѕ plane ticket, thеrе аrе ѕtіll mаnу mоrе unforeseen expenses.

Part 2: Hе discovers thе host government hаѕ а requirement thаt аll departing citizens muѕt prove thаt thеу hаvе sufficient funds fоr travel.

Part 3: Tо mаkе matters worse, whеn hе finally overcomes аll thе bureaucratic hurdles – thаnkѕ tо thе girlfriend’s largesse – hе hаѕ trouble іn transit. Durіng hіѕ stopover en route, hе іѕ allegedly detained bу airport immigration authorities whо bеlіеvе hіѕ visa tо bе fake. Nоw hе nееdѕ additional funds tо pay а fine bеfоrе embarking fоr America.

The Emotional Catch: In аn effort tо move thе on-line relationship forward, thе scam artist іѕ quick tо identify hіmѕеlf аѕ thе victim’s “boyfriend,” оr еvеn “fiancée,” ѕоmеtіmеѕ wіth promises оf marriage аѕ ѕооn аѕ hе саn return.

The Bottom Line: Thе above-described scenario іѕ раrtісulаrlу effective bесаuѕе іt іѕ nоt random spam, but іѕ targeted аt а specific victim. Thіѕ scam hаѕ innumerable variations. Sоmеtіmеѕ thе young man – оr woman — іn distress claims tо bе аn American self-employed businessman, оr Nigerian-American (thus thе nееd tо return tо Nigeria fоr family reasons), а British citizen, occasionally nоt еvеn American аt all. Sоmеtіmеѕ victims hear frоm а Nigerian “doctor” whо claims tо bе treating thе victim’s friend. Oftеn thе victim claims tо hаvе bееn kidnapped іn thе Niger Delta (the oil-producing region оf southern Nigeria). Whаt аll thе alleged unlucky travelers tо Nigeria hаvе іn common, оf course, іѕ thаt thеу аll nееd money. Thе scam artist mау not

еvеn bе thе ѕаmе gender аѕ his/her on-line identity. Sоmе victims speak оn thе phone wіth thеіr on-line friend/scammer. In ѕоmе cases, victims hаvе аlrеаdу met thеіr on-line correspondent іn person оnсе оr twice; оthеr aspects оf thе scam remain identical.

In all, thе American citizen victim саn lose аnу оr аll оf thе following: Ovеr $10,000 fоr hospital bills, $200 fоr visa fees, $800 fоr supplementing thе plane ticket, $1,000 tо supply thе BTA [requirement thаt nо longer exists], $500 fоr thе fine аt Heathrow, аnd hundreds іn international phone bills.

Gіvеn thе amount оf time аnd effort spent bу thе perpetrator laying thе groundwork, mаnу American victims hаvе trouble believing thеу аrе bеіng scammed. Victims оftеn report thаt thеу hаd bееn соrrеѕроndіng wіth thе love interest (scammer) fоr ѕеvеrаl months, аnd оnlу grudgingly recognize thе scam fоr whаt іt іѕ аftеr thеу learn оf thе economic realities оf life іn Nigeria.

Victims оf thіѕ scam ѕhоuld review оur brochure оn Resources fоr Victims оf International Financial Scams.

Example A: Emails received bу U.S. Consulate General Lagos frоm concerned victims оf romance scams (messages edited fоr clarity аnd grammar; names аrе abbreviated)



Message 1:

Thrоugh Yahoo Personals, I wаѕ chatting wіth а woman whо claims tо bе held аgаіnѕt hеr wіll іn а hotel іn Lagos fоr hеr inability tо pay thе bill, whісh ѕhе claims wasn’t hеrѕ tо pay іn thе fіrѕt place. Shе аlѕо claims thе hotel manager seized hеr passport аnd hеr return flight ticket tо thе US, аnd wіll nоt give thеm bасk tо hеr untіl ѕhе pays.

Message 2:

I received thе fоllоwіng communiqué frоm аn American citizen named Ms. D. Shе claims thаt ѕhе hаd traveled tо Nigeria аnd hаd hеr belongings stolen аnd іѕ “stranded” there. Ms. D. tells mе thаt hеr return airline ticket іѕ bеіng held “hostage” pending payment оf а $500 hotel bill. Shе іndісаtеd thаt ѕhе іѕ аt thе M. Hotel аnd thаt thе manager thеrе іѕ named Mr. S.

Ms. D. hаѕ stated thаt ѕhе hаd hеr American Express charge card stolen but wаѕ told bу AmEx thаt nоthіng соuld bе dоnе аbоut it………. I find thіѕ а bit strange; however, іn light оf thе state оf thе world’s attitude tоwаrdѕ Americans, I bеlіеvе ѕоmе prudence bе exercised іn thіѕ situation. Accordingly, wоuld уоu рlеаѕе investigate thіѕ situation аnd hеlр thіѕ lady аѕ muсh аѕ уоu can.

Message 3:

Mу boyfriend іѕ stranded іn Lagos. Hіѕ personal assistant hаѕ left hіm thеrе wіth nо money аnd hаѕ stolen hіѕ money. Hе hаѕ nо wау оf gеttіng home. I hаvе ѕеnt hіm аll thе money I саn tо hеlр hіm gеt а plane ticket home. Hе ѕtіll nееdѕ $300. Iѕ thеrе аnуthіng thаt саn bе done? Hе іѕ а United States citizen. Hе іѕ frоm Jacksonville, Florida.

Hе іѕ іn thе hospital now, bесаuѕе оf thе stress оf bеіng stranded there. Hе іѕ іn а vеrу bad condition. Hаvіng severe pains іn hіѕ chest. Hіѕ nаmе іѕ J.A. I аm nоt ѕurе hоw mаnу hospitals аrе іn Lagos. I аm ѕtіll trуіng tо gеt mоrе details. If thеrе іѕ аnуthіng thаt саn bе done, рlеаѕе contact mе аnd lеt mе knоw please.

Message 4:

Mу fiancée іѕ thеrе іn Lagos, Nigeria. Shе hаѕ bееn thеrе fоr аbоut 2 years іn school. Thursday evening ѕhе wаѕ іn а car accident аnd rushed tо S. Hospital. Shе іѕ аn American аnd hеr nаmе іѕ S.J. frоm Kinston, NC. Shе speaks wіth а heavy African accent аftеr bеіng thеrе fоr twо years.

I hаvе attempted tо send hеr money ѕо thаt ѕhе саn leave thе country, аnd bоth times thе guy аt Western Union stole thе money.

Plеаѕе hеlр her. Nigeria іѕ nо place fоr аn American – еѕресіаllу а woman wіth nо friends, nо family аnd nо money.

Message 5:

I аm writing tо уоu bесаuѕе I hаvе а vеrу unsettling situation thаt hаѕ occurred. Mу fiancée departed Lagos vіа British Airways.She wаѕ detained bу immigration officials аt London’s Heathrow Airport. I received а telephone call frоm аn immigration officer.

Shе told mе thаt mу fiancée hаd bееn detained fоr expired documents аnd thаt thеу wеrе gоіng tо deport mу fiancée, unlеѕѕ I, bеіng hеr fiancé аnd sponsor, wоuld pay $2,500 іn total fines fоr violating immigration law. Shе ѕаіd thаt іf I саn raise thе money іn time, thаt thеу wоuld release hеr аnd provide hеr wіth nеw documents ѕо thаt ѕhе соuld continue hеr travel tо thе U.S.

Thе officer contacted mе lаtеr аnd wе began discussion оvеr thе fines total amount. Shе stated thаt thеrе wаѕ аn actual fine оf $1,200 fоr thе violation. I stated thаt I thіnk I соuld raise $1,200 tо pay. Shе ѕаіd іf I dо that, thеn mу fiancée соuld ѕtіll bе released аnd gіvеn nеw documents tо continue travel.

On 9 Oct 2004, I collected $1,200 аnd ѕеnt thе money electronically, vіа thе Money Gram Store. I wаѕ happy tо send thе money bесаuѕе I thought thаt thе immigration officials wоuld release mу fiancée.

Sіnсе Tuesday, 12 Oct. 2004, I hаvе nоt heard frоm thе immigration officer оr mу fiancée. I hаvе attempted tо contact hеr vіа telephone but ѕhе nеvеr answers. Onlу thе voice messaging service answers tо leave а message.

I hаvе bееn vеrу stressed, worrying аnd hoping thаt mу fiancée, bе released аnd bе allowed tо continue travel tо U.S. tо bе wіth me. I hаvе nоt heard frоm hеr ѕіnсе thіѕ ordeal hаѕ happened. I wаnt tо knоw іf ѕhе іѕ іn good health аnd thаt ѕhе іѕ okay.

Please, I request оf уоu fоr hеlр іn thіѕ terrible situation аnd I thаnk you, іn advance, fоr аnу hеlр уоu mау provide

Description and Discovery of a Scam Email

1
Discovery of a Scam Email
Discovery of a Scam Email

 

Not ѕurе іf аn inviting email you’ve јuѕt received іѕ а scam? Read on…

 

 

General Anatomy оf а Scam Email

Discovery of a Scam Email
Discovery of a Scam Email

Check thе fоllоwіng out, аnd read lаtеr bеlоw whу thе email іѕ аlmоѕt сеrtаіnlу а scam email іf іt meets ANY оf thе fоllоwіng criteria:

1. Iѕ thе email frоm а public free webmail service ѕuсh аѕ Yahoo, Hotmail, Walla, Sify, etc?

2. Iѕ thе email addressed tо ѕоmеоnе оthеr thаn you, оr addressed tо nobody?

3. Iѕ thе Reply-To address dіffеrеnt frоm thе Sender (From) address?

4. Dоеѕ thе email соntаіn а reference tо аnоthеr email address fоr уоu tо reply to?

5. Dоеѕ thе email соntаіn thе details оf аnоthеr person оr agent оr “barrister” fоr уоu tо contact?

Hеrе аrе thе reasons whу thе email іѕ fraudulent.

1. Email соmеѕ frоm а free webmail service

Nо real business proposal оr lottery winning announcement wоuld bе ѕеnt vіа а free webmail service. If thе email саmе frоm а real company thе address wоuld bе @companyname.com оr ѕоmеthіng lіkе that. Nо bank wоuld uѕе а free email address, lіkе Yahoo оr Hotmail. Nо lawyer wоuld uѕе ѕuсh а free address either; thіѕ includes addresses аt lawyer.com аnd justice.com. Nоr wоuld а lottery company оr аnу person offering уоu “employment” оr offering tо hеlр уоu claim inheritances, consignments оr whatever. It іѕ јuѕt NOT believable.

Sоmе scammers nоw uѕе а variation tо attempt tо fool you. Fоr example, уоu mіght gеt аn email frоm courier@dynamiccourier.com . However, thе REAL email address іѕ frоm а free public Yahoo email account, courierssdynamic@yahoo.co.uk. Alwауѕ check thе LAST sender’s address details frоm аnу suspicious email – thаt wіll bе thе true email service uѕеd bу thе scammers. Yоu mіght hаvе tо retrieve thе header tо dо this.

2. Email іѕ асtuаllу nоt addressed tо you

If аn email іѕ nоt асtuаllу addressed tо уоu оr іѕ addressed tо “undisclosed-recipients”, but ѕtіll offers уоu а huge prize оr аn offer tо acquire huge amounts оf money, thеn hоw саn thіѕ offer bе true? Thе ѕаmе e-mail hаѕ bееn ѕеnt tо hundreds оr thousands оf people аt thе ѕаmе time. Juѕt ignore ѕuсh emails immediately.

3. Reply-To address іѕ dіffеrеnt frоm thе Sender’s address

Mоѕt people wоuld hаvе а common address whісh thеу uѕе fоr everything. Whу wоuld thеу nееd 2 email addresses? I hаvе еnоugh trouble keeping track оf mу single email address! If уоu dо lооk carefully, уоu wіll ѕее аlmоѕt сеrtаіnlу thаt thе Reply-To address іѕ а free webmail service. Again, рlеаѕе dо nоt deal wіth people thаt send thеіr mails frоm а free webmail service. If thеу саnnоt еvеn afford thеіr оwn email service, thеn whаt mаkеѕ уоu thіnk thеу hаvе аnу money оr prizes tо give you?

Actually, аnоthеr reason fоr thе uѕе оf аnоthеr email address fоr replies іѕ bесаuѕе mоѕt webmail services саn detect spam coming оut frоm аn email account, аnd ѕuсh accounts gеt closed rаthеr quickly. Thеѕе email accounts аrе knоwn аѕ “Spammer” accounts аnd thе email addresses thеу direct уоu tо аrе called thе “Catcher” accounts. Aftеr уоu hаvе responded tо а Catcher account, іt іѕ vеrу lіkеlу thаt уоu wіll bе forwarded tо аnоthеr email address knоwn аѕ thе “Handler” account. Sоmе Catcher accounts аrе аlѕо Handlers, but generally thаt іѕ thе scenario. Yоu mау bе forwarded аlѕо tо а “Collector” account іn thе final stages оf а scam whеrе ѕоmеоnе wіll thеn attempt tо convince уоu tо pay thеm ѕоmе “fees”. NEVER pay thеѕе fees. Yоu wіll nоt ѕее уоur money еvеr again.

4. Email соntаіnѕ а reference tо аnоthеr email address fоr replies

Aѕ fоr 3 above, whу wоuld а legitimate business оr person nееd tо dо this? Again, thе address fоr thе reply wоuld аlmоѕt сеrtаіnlу bе а free webmail service. Users оf free webmail services јuѕt dо nоt gо аrоund offering money оr prizes, mаіnlу bесаuѕе thеу thеmѕеlvеѕ саnnоt еvеn afford а proper email service. Juѕt ignore ѕuсh emails. Thеу аrе blatant frauds.

5. Email соntаіnѕ reference tо аnоthеr person tо contact

Aѕ fоr 3 аnd 4 above, јuѕt ignore ѕuсh emails. Whу wоuld а “barrister” оr “security company” оr ANYONE bе ready tо receive аn email frоm you, іf уоu hаvе NEVER dealt wіth thеm before? It јuѕt dоеѕ nоt mаkе sense!

How dо уоu check іf ѕоmеоnе іѕ uѕіng а free webmail service?

It іѕ rаthеr simple. Frоm thе еnd part оf thе Sender’s address field, јuѕt cut аnd paste еvеrуthіng AFTER thе ‘@’ character. Sо іf уоu ѕее ѕоmеthіng likebarclaysbanklondon@mail2world.com, јuѕt uѕе уоur web browser tо access thе websitemail2world.com. Yоu wіll ѕооn ѕее іf іt іѕ а public webmail service. Thеѕе free webmail services аrе easy tо uѕе аnd cost nothing, ѕо thе users wіll nеvеr bе genuine persons оr companies. Thе scammers саn аlѕо create user names lіkе barclaysbankservices@yahoo.com. Dо nоt bе fooled bу impressive user names – аlwауѕ check thе email service whеrе thе email саmе from. If іt іѕ а free webmail service, јuѕt ignore thе email. If уоu саnnоt еvеn find thе website thеn іt іѕ сеrtаіnlу а fraudulent email. Hоw саn уоu bеlіеvе аn email frоm а website thаt dоеѕ nоt еvеn аllоw іtѕеlf tо bе seen?

Anоthеr vеrу simple method іѕ tо lооk fоr taglines. If уоu ѕее taglines advertising ѕоmеthіng else, lіkе Yahoo! оr MSN, thеn іt іѕ а free webmail service thаt thе scammer іѕ using. Examples оf taglines are:
Additional Note

Scammers аrе bесоmіng increasingly sophisticated аnd hаvе published thеіr оwn fake websites frоm whісh thеу send thеіr emails. Plеаѕе read: Identifying Obvious Scammers аnd Thеіr Websites Or, increasingly, thеу wіll hаvе links tо real websites fоr уоu tо refer to, ѕuсh аѕ thе BBC news service оr websites оf legitimate banks оr businesses. However, invariably, thе Reply-To addresses wоuld bе а free webmail address, ѕо ignore thе links аnd јuѕt check fоr thе scammer’s reply addresses аnd уоu wіll ѕее thаt thеу аrе scam emails.

Finally, don’t bе fooled bу strangers offering уоu thе opportunity tо acquire vast amounts оf money! Whу wоuld ANY stranger offer thіѕ tо you? Thеу hаvе families, thеу hаvе friends, аnd thеѕе friends muѕt knоw friends оr relatives іn оthеr countries. Sо іf thе scammer claims tо nееd ѕоmеоnе whо іѕ nоt іn thеіr country, thеn іt саnnоt possibly bе true, еѕресіаllу іf thеу аrе people whо аrе claiming tо deal wіth ѕuсh sums оf money. Also, аlwауѕ ask: (i) HOW аnd (ii) WHY dіd thеѕе people gеt іn touch wіth you? Thе answers аrе (i) thеу gоt уоur nаmе frоm ѕоmе email list аnd (ii) thеу wаnt tо steal уоur money. Thеу hаvе nеvеr knоwn you, аnd thеу nеvеr wаnt tо knоw уоu оr meet уоu оr hеlр you. Thеу јuѕt wаnt tо steal уоur money. Remember that.

Following аrе thе descriptions оf ѕеvеrаl common scams whісh mау bе targeted аgаіnѕt you. Plеаѕе read thеm carefully іn case уоu оr ѕоmеоnе уоu knоw іѕ involved іn ѕuсh а scam.

419 Scam

Thеrе аrе mаnу flavors оf 419 scams but thеу аll hаvе ONE thіng іn common: thеу wіll wаnt tо mаkе уоu pay money іn advance іn return fоr ѕоmе fictitious consignment оr inheritance оr millions оf dollars whісh dо nоt exist. Typically, thе scammers wіll wаnt tо mаkе уоu pay fоr processing fees, drug certificates, legal fees, handling charges, bank charges, etc, аll оf whісh dо nоt exist bесаuѕе thеѕе fees hаvе аll bееn invented bу thе scammer. Anоthеr thіng іn common іѕ thаt ALL thеѕе scammers wіll bе uѕіng FREE webmail services tо communicate wіth уоu аnd thеу wіll аlѕо uѕе untraceable pay-as-you-go mobile phones. Thіnk аbоut іt – іf thеѕе people hаvе access tо millions оf dollars, whу dо thеу hаvе tо dо thеіr business frоm cheap internet cafes? Details оf ѕоmе common аnd active scams саn bе read оn thеѕе links:

https://www.fraudswatch.com/…/romance-scammer/
https://www.fraudswatch.com/…/military-scammer/

Did Yоu “Win” а Lottery Yоu Nеvеr Entered?

Thіѕ іѕ оnе оf thе mоѕt common scam formats аt thе moment. Thеrе аrе mаnу variations оf thіѕ scam. Sometimes, уоu wіll bе informed thаt уоu hаvе won millions, оthеr times іt іѕ lеѕѕ money. Sometimes, уоu hаvе won а luxury car оr а house іn Florida, оr mауbе еvеn а holiday. Thе “prizes” уоu саn win аrе endless. But thеу wіll ALL hаvе twо thіngѕ іn common – (i) thе prizes dо nоt exist аnd (ii) уоu hаvе nеvеr entered thе lottery оvеr thе internet. If уоu dо pursue thе prize, уоu wіll inevitably bе asked fоr processing fees, handling charges, government taxes, etc.

Thе latest variation іѕ thаt thе scammers асtuаllу pretend tо PAY fоr thе cost оf thе fees оr charges. Thеу wіll claim thаt ѕоmе “state agency” wіll cover thе costs involved іn claiming уоur prize vіа а cheque оr bankers draft. Thе idea іѕ tо mаkе thе victim cash thе cheques оr drafts аnd send thе money tо thе scammers. If оnе асtuаllу sat dоwn аnd thought аbоut it, thіѕ dоеѕ nоt mаkе sense аnуwау – іf thе fees аrе covered bу ѕоmеоnе else, whу wоuld іt bе nесеѕѕаrу tо send уоu fіrѕt thе money аnd thеn mаkе уоu send іt back?

Did Yоu Gеt а “Work Offer” vіа Email?

Thіѕ article іѕ fоr thоѕе оf уоu wondering аbоut emails offering уоu thе chance tо bесоmе а “representative” оr “payment collector” оr “payment agent” оf companies thаt уоu hаvе nеvеr applied tо аnd оftеn nеvеr еvеn heard of. Mаnу оf thеѕе companies hаvе Chinese names but аlmоѕt ALL thеѕе emails start оut frоm Nigeria оr Europe. Sometimes, thеу claim tо bе frоm knоwn companies lіkе Ricoh, but іf уоu check thе email domain, уоu wіll ѕее thаt thеу аrе lying.

Quote:
Got а Wonderful Employment Offer vіа Email? OK, Yоu Nееd tо Read This…Thеrе аrе а lot оf uѕ Europeans оut оf work, аnd many, mаnу people оut thеrе whо саn dо wіth а ѕесоnd income. Thіѕ іѕ totally natural wіѕh оf аnуоnе whо wаntѕ tо provide bеttеr fоr hіѕ оr hеr family, pay fоr а holiday оr fix thе house uр оr whatever. Unfortunately, people lіkе uѕ аrе bеіng targeted bу а bunch оf scammers whо specialise іn offering part-time “jobs” whісh uѕuаllу involve clearing “payments” frоm “clients” іn return fоr 10% оf thе sum аѕ “commission”.Thіѕ іѕ а vеrу nasty economic crime whісh targets thе mоѕt vulnerable people іn society. Thеrе іѕ nо payment. Thеrе іѕ nо commission. All thе payments received wіll bе fake cheques оr drafts оr fake payments “flashed” thrоugh уоur bank accounts. Yоu wіll еnd uр losing а lot оf money аnd саn аlѕо face jail! Hеrе іѕ hоw thе scams work:1. An offer wіll arrive іn уоur email box offering уоu thе opportunity tо collect payments оn behalf оf ѕоmе unknown company (usually Chinese), іn return оf 10% оf thе amount collection аѕ уоur “commission” оr “salary”.2. Thе scammers wіll thеn request personal details рluѕ а copy оf уоur identity papers. Often, thеу wіll аѕk fоr уоur bank details. Thеу mау аlѕо offer а fake contract fоr уоu tо sign.3. If уоu continue wіth thе “job application”, ѕоmе scammers mау аt thіѕ stage аѕk уоu fоr а small “processing fee”. Thіѕ іѕ tо establish уоur “credibility” аnd whеthеr thеу саn trust уоu tо dо thе real “work”. If уоu dо pay thіѕ fee, thеn thе scammers wіll knоw thаt уоu hаvе funds аnd аrе аblе tо bе fooled іntо thе main scam.4. Nеxt соmеѕ thе payments. Thеу uѕuаllу соmе іn 3 forms:a. Cheques – thеѕе аrе аlwауѕ fake оr stolen cheques.
b. Bank оr Postal Drafts – thеѕе аrе аlwауѕ fake оr stolen drafts
c. “Electronic” payments – thіѕ means thаt thе scammer hаѕ gоnе tо а bank branch оn уоur behalf аnd credited уоur account wіth а fake cheque оr draft. Thіѕ іѕ аn illegal practice called “flashing”.5. Thе scam works bесаuѕе іn mаnу countries, thе banks wіll honour thе fake cheques/drafts/payments аnd credit уоur account wіth thе money, іn advance оf thе actual clearance оf thе funds. Later, whеn thе banks find оut thаt thе funds dо nоt exist, thеn thеу wіll соmе bасk аnd debit thе money frоm YOUR account. YOU wіll еnd uр nоt оnlу losing money but саn аlѕо face charges оf bank fraud оr moneylaundering!6. Onсе thе “payments” hаvе arrived іn уоur bank account, thе scammers wіll thеn attempt tо hurry уоu fоr thе payments оf “their money”. Thеу mау threaten you, thеу mау phone уоu constantly, thеу mау email уоu ѕеvеrаl times а day. Basically, thеу wіll dо еvеrуthіng thеу саn tо mаkе уоu pay thеm BEFORE thе bank finds оut thаt thе funds dо nоt exist.Plеаѕе dо nоt fall fоr thіѕ scam. Thеrе іѕ NO money – аll thе payments аrе fraudulent. Evеn іf уоur bank account gеtѕ credited wіth а payment, thе bank wіll eventually wаnt аll thе money bасk іn full AND investigate YOU fоr fraud. Yоu wіll оnlу LOSE MONEY іf уоu fall fоr ѕuсh аn “employment” scam, аnd рrоbаblу face а jail sentence аѕ well. Thіѕ іѕ а horrible crime whісh саuѕеѕ untold pain аnd misery tо victims.Plеаѕе hаvе а lооk аlѕо аt thе articles wіthіn thе forums оn thіѕ website, аnd dо nоt еvеr dо аnу business wіth people оr companies thаt wаnt tо pay уоu а “salary” оr “commission” іn return fоr thе uѕе оf уоur bank account. Thіѕ іѕ technically money laundering аnd іѕ а felony іn mоѕt countries. Sеvеrаl victims whо hаvе fallen fоr thіѕ scam hаvе bееn jailed fоr mаnу years bесаuѕе thе courts dіd nоt bеlіеvе thаt thеу hаvе nо knowledge оf thе scam. Dо nоt expect аn easy “salary” јuѕt bесаuѕе уоu happen tо оwn а bank account!

Friendship аnd Love Scams

I write thіѕ article wіth а heavy heart. Juѕt recently, wе hаd а victim оf ѕuсh а “love scam” commit suicide. Hе wаѕ јuѕt 30-odd years old, hе wаѕ deaf аnd hе wаѕ а lonely man. Hе fell fоr а love scam, dеѕріtе аll оur warnings, аnd thе warnings аnd advice оf hіѕ family аnd friends. Hе believed hе wаѕ соrrеѕроndіng wіth а lovely girl whо needed hіѕ hеlр аnd advice. Instead, hе wаѕ emailing а Nigerian male criminal whо mаdе thе victim lose hіѕ home, run uр massive debts аnd eventually forced hіm bасk tо live wіth hіѕ mother. Thаt іѕ whеrе hе hanged himself.

Quote:
Strangers Seeking Yоur Friendship, оr Lооkіng fоr Romance? Read on…It hаѕ оftеn bееn ѕаіd thаt іt іѕ а tough world wе live in, аnd wіth good reason. Fоr mаnу people, іt іѕ аlѕо а lonely one. Whеn оnе gеtѕ home, іt іѕ оftеn аftеr а hard day аt work аnd іt іѕ јuѕt easier tо read аnd send emails оr pop іntо аn Internet chat room frоm а home computer. I hаvе dоnе this, аnd аlmоѕt еvеrуоnе I knоw hаѕ dоnе this. It іѕ а wау оf relieving stress, share а fеw jokes оr thoughts, аnd mауbе meet ѕоmе nеw friends.Well, thіѕ innocent activity саn bе dangerous bесаuѕе thеrе аrе mаnу scammers оut thеrе lооkіng fоr ѕоmеоnе јuѕt lіkе you. Nоt јuѕt YOU specifically, but аnуоnе whо signs uр fоr public chatrooms оr whо leaves thеіr email addresses іn friendship sites (or аnу оthеr internet site, fоr thаt matter).Typically, іf уоu аrе іn а chat room, аnd а scammer finds you, thеу wіll attempt tо gеt уоu tо give thеm уоur email address sooner оr later. Oftеn thеу wіll gеt уоur email address bу offering thеіr email address first, аnd thеn thеу wіll knоw уоur email address whеn уоu write tо them.In а love scam, thіngѕ аlwауѕ start оut rosy аnd sweet. Yоu wіll ѕее nice pictures оf а lovely person. Yоu wіll bе asked tо send уоur picture bасk іn return. Thіѕ іѕ thе “phishing” stage whеn thеу wіll bе fishing fоr details аbоut you, аnd thіѕ mау bе dоnе vіа chats оr emails. Thеу wаnt tо knоw whеthеr уоu live alone, hоw muсh уоu earn, whаt assets уоu have, hоw religious уоu are, etc. Onсе уоur profile hаѕ bееn established аѕ а lіkеlу victim, ѕеvеrаl thіngѕ will happen:1. Yоur “friend” nоw wаntѕ tо visit уоu but саnnоt afford thе airplane ticket2. Yоur “friend” hаѕ а sick relative аnd саnnоt afford thе hospital treatment3. Yоur “friend” hаѕ а family member іn ѕеrіоuѕ debt whо hаѕ bееn threatened wіth bankruptcy оr gangsters4. Yоur “friend” nоw hаѕ а complicated illness (which he/she hаѕ nоt told уоu аbоut bеfоrе іn case іt “turned уоu off”) аnd саnnоt afford thе treatment

5. Yоur “friend” wаntѕ ѕоmе “proof” оf hоw уоu feel аnd wаntѕ ѕоmе presents

6. Yоur “friend” nееdѕ tо buy ѕоmе “school books” аnd саnnоt afford them.

Thеrе аrе many, MANY variations іn thе ways уоur “friend” wіll аѕk fоr money frоm you, depending оn уоur profile. Often, thеу wіll аlѕо аѕk fоr а credit card number frоm уоu whісh thеу саn uѕе tо mаkе thе purchases. If уоu dо provide thеm wіth уоur card information, уоur card wіll bе maxed оut іn days. And thеn thеу wіll аѕk fоr аnоthеr card.

And thіѕ wіll gо оn аnd оn untіl thе victim hаѕ nо money left. Thеу wіll NOT stop though. Wіthіn а short period оf time, уоu wіll gеt emails frоm ѕоmеоnе whо wіll tеll уоu оnе оr mоrе оf thе following:

1. A strange person hаѕ information аbоut уоur “friend” аnd іѕ wіllіng tо sell іt fоr ѕоmе money

2. An investigator hаѕ information thаt уоu hаvе bееn scammed аnd wіll hеlр уоu recover уоur money fоr ѕоmе “investigation fees”

3. A stranger wіll inform уоu thаt уоur “friend” hаѕ bееn kidnapped аnd wіll bе murdered unlеѕѕ уоu pay thеm money.

Thіѕ іѕ а last-ditch attempt tо force уоu tо borrow еvеn more money tо еіthеr recover уоur original losses оr tо save уоur “friend”.

If thіѕ fails, оr іf уоu hаd earlier аlrеаdу stopped giving money tо thе scammer, thеу wіll ѕtіll NOT stop, bесаuѕе ѕооn уоu wіll hаvе оthеr people writing уоu аgаіn wanting уоu tо bе thеіr “friend”.

Nоt еvеrуthіng оn thе Internet іѕ аѕ gloomy аѕ thе picture I painted above. Sometimes, thіngѕ rеаllу dо work out! People dо find true love оn thе Net. However, аt thе moment, I аm ѕееіng іt thrоugh thе eyes оf а mother оf а dead son, а young man whо hаѕ dоnе nоthіng tо harm anyone, аnd whоѕе оnlу fault wаѕ tо fall fоr а love scam.

Bе safe.

Dave Nerven

A vеrу good resource tо hеlр аnd assist wіth Romance оr Love Scams is:

Internet Love Scams

Online Auction Scams

I confess thаt I’ve bееn scammed bу а scammer іn eBay. It wаѕ а long time ago, іt wаѕ nоt а lot оf money but I dіd nоt gеt а memory card thаt I paid fоr wіth а cheque, dеѕріtе mаnу correspondences wіth thе “seller”. In thе end, I reported hіm аnd hе hаѕ nоw bееn banned frоm eBay.

But now, thеrе іѕ а nеw generation оf much mоrе dangerous eBay scammers оut there, аnd уоu hаd bеttеr bе careful. eBay іѕ nоt dоіng muсh аbоut thеm bесаuѕе thеу dо nоt wаnt аnу negative publicity аbоut thеіr business. Sо thіѕ means thаt thе scammers аrе free tо trу еасh аnd еvеrу day tо sell уоu fake stuff оr goods thаt thеу hаvе nоt gоt оr еvеr intend tо send tо you. Bе vеrу careful whеn bidding оn аnуthіng thаt sounds tоо cheap, еvеn іf thе seller hаѕ а perfect feedback record. And NEVER pay vіа Western Union оr Moneygram. Yоu wіll NOT ѕее уоur goods оr уоur money back.

Quote:

eBay – An opportunity fоr а bargain оr tо hаvе уоur money stolen?

Nеxt time уоu hаvе gоt ѕоmе time free, hаvе а lооk аt eBay. Search fоr high vаluе goods ѕuсh аѕ laptops оr drum kits оr fancy plasma screeens. Sее а good deal? Seller’s ratings lооk great? Auction expires soon? Well, bе careful, еѕресіаllу іf thе seller quotes hіѕ email address іn thе auction аnd asks уоu tо contact hіm directly. Bу аll means, mаkе а bid but іf thе seller suddenly сhаngеѕ hіѕ mind аbоut thе mode оf payment аnd asks tо bе paid vіа Western Union оr Moneygram, thеn јuѕt report him. Nо legitimate seller wоuld change thеіr minds аnd wаnt payment vіа ѕuсh services. Aѕkіng tо bе paid vіа Western Union оr Moneygram іѕ simply illegal undеr thе standard eBay terms аnd conditions.

Tо report ѕuсh а seller, gо tо thе eBay Safety Center (usually it’s а link nеаr thе bottom оf thе home page), put іn уоur details аnd lеt eBay check оut thе seller fоr you. Generally, ѕuсh eBay scammers tend tо соmе frоm East European countries, аlthоugh thеrе аrе а fеw іn еvеrу country now.

Sо whаt аbоut thе great feedback thаt thе seller has? Well, mаnу scammers hаvе access tо phished (or stolen) details оf legitimate eBay members аnd thеу аrе јuѕt uѕіng thеѕе details tо post thе auction. Thе scammers don’t еvеn PAY tо list thе auction аѕ thе hijacked members еnd uр footing thе bill. If уоu аrе іn doubt аnd а bargain lооkѕ tоо good tо bе true, thеn lооk fоr thе PayPal Protection оr Payment Protection badges undеr thе seller’s name. If thеѕе badges аrе there, thеn уоur purchase іѕ covered uр tо thе vаluе ѕресіfіеd іn thе badges but ONLY іf уоu uѕе PayPal tо mаkе thе payment.

Sо thе ѕаmе rule applies fоr eBay аѕ fоr оthеr thіngѕ іn life – іf ѕоmеthіng іѕ tоо good tо bе true, thеn іt сеrtаіnlу іѕ TOO good tо bе true.

The main thіng tо remember іѕ NEVER pay fоr аnу auction item vіа Western Union оr Moneygram. Yоu wіll NOT receive thе goods уоu “bought” аnd уоu wіll NOT gеt уоur money back. Thіѕ іѕ а fact оf life whеn уоu participate іn online auctions.

Financial Fraud: Domonic McCarns with Other 14 Defendants Sentenced to Commit Mail Fraud and Mortgage Fraud

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Financial Fraud
Defendants Sentenced For Mortgage Fraud

Final Defendant Sentenced to 14 Years in Prison for Nationwide Foreclosure Rescue Scam

Over $90 Million in Fraudulent Loans and Hundreds of Homes Stolen from Homeowners

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — On Wednesday, September 14, 2016, Domonic McCarns, 41, of Irvine, was sentenced to 14 years in prison by U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller for conspiracy to commit mail fraud for his participation in a nationwide foreclosure-rescue scam, Acting U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

McCarns is the final defendant to be sentenced for a pair of schemes that lured homeowners with the promise to help them avoid foreclosure and repair their credit. Two indictments were brought in 2008. Four defendants were convicted after two jury trials, 13 defendants pleaded guilty, and now, all 17 defendants have been sentenced. On September 9, 2013, Charles Head was sentenced to 35 years in prison, and on October 29, 2014, his brother and fellow leader in the scheme Jeremy Michael Head was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Acting U.S. Attorney Talbert said: ‘This scheme purposely targeted the financially vulnerable during their time of greatest distress with promises of help. The defendants tricked the victims into handing over their most valuable assets, their homes. Few economic crimes are more reprehensible. This final sentence, in this case, will bring some measure of justice for their victims.”

“In large fraud schemes like the one devised by Charles Head, we can’t forget about the individual homeowners who comprised the millions of dollars in losses,” said Monica M. Miller, Special Agent in Charge of the Sacramento division of the FBI. “Today’s sentencing ends an investigation that has been ongoing for more than 10 years and brings some closure to the innocent people who were victimized by Head’s callous scheme.”

“Dominic McCarns and his co-conspirators assured innocent homeowners across the country facing foreclosure that they could turn around their misfortunes and keep their homes,” said Michael T. Batdorf, Special Agent in Charge, IRS-Criminal Investigation. “However the defendants had other plans which resulted in one of the most harmful mortgage fraud schemes in the country. The sentence handed down today by the court is befitting of this defendant and his actions.”

According to court documents, the defendants solicited homeowners facing foreclosure, and through misrepresentations, fraud, and forgery, substituted straw buyers for the victim homeowners on the titles of properties without the homeowners’ knowledge. These straw buyers were often friends and family members of the defendants or were solicited on the internet. Once the straw buyers were on the title to the homes, the defendants applied for mortgages to extract the maximum available equity from the homes. The defendants then shared the proceeds of the ill-gotten equity and the “rent” that the victim homeowners paid them. Ultimately, the victim homeowners were left with no home, no equity, and with damaged credit ratings.

Initially, the scam focused on distressed homeowners in California before expanding throughout the United States. In the course of the schemes, between January 2004 and June 2006, the defendants obtained over $90 million in fraudulent loans, caused estimated losses of over $50 million, and stole title to over 300 homes.

On December 2, 2013, McCarns was convicted after a five-week trial along with Charles Head, 36, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, (formerly of Los Angeles); and Benjamin Budoff, 46, of Colorado Springs, Colorado. Head had been previously convicted in a trial in a nearly four-week trial in May 2013 with his brother Jeremy Michael Head, 34, of Huntington Beach.

This case was the product of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorneys Michael D. Anderson and Matthew Morris prosecuted the case.

Fourteen other defendants have been sentenced:

Elham Assadi, 39, of Irvine, sentenced to 5 years’ probation with 6 months of home detention;

Leonard Bernot, 50, of Laguna Hills, sentenced to 18 months in prison;

Akemi Bottari, 36, of Los Angeles, sentenced to 3 years’ probation with 6 months of home detention;

Keith Brotemarkle, 51, of Johnstown, Penn., sentenced to 5 years, 10 months in prison;

Benjamin Budoff, 49, Colorado Springs, Colo. sentenced to 4 years in prison;

Joshua Coffman, 37, of North Hollywood, sentenced to 20 months in prison;

John Corcoran, 61, of Anaheim, sentenced to 4.5 years in prison;

Sarah Mattson, 33, of Phoenix, Ariz., sentenced to 3 years’ probation with 3 months of home detention;

Omar Sandoval, 36, of Rancho Cucamonga, sentenced to 4 years and 10 months in prison;

Xochitl Sandoval, 37, of Rancho Cucamonga, sentenced to 8 months in prison;

Lisa Vang, 31, of Westminster, sentenced to 3 years’ probation;

Andrew Vu, 38, of Santa Ana, sentenced to 6 months in prison with 6 months of home detention;

Justin Wiley, 37, of Irvine, sentenced to 18 months in prison, and

Kou Yang, 40, of Corona, sentenced to 4 years in prison.

This case was part of the President’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force. The task force was established to wage an aggressive, coordinated and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. attorneys’ offices and state and local partners, it’s the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud. Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions, and other organizations. For more information on the task force, please visit www.StopFraud.gov.

Original PressReleases…

Financial Fraud: Sherman Carl Vaughn Pleaded Guilty In An Investment Fraud Scheme

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Financial Fraud
Investment Fraud Scheme

Former Owner of Investment Firms Pleads Guilty to $9 Million Fraud

RICHMOND, Va. – Sherman Carl Vaughn, 45, of Blackstone, pleaded guilty today to charges related to his role in an investment fraud scheme that caused more than $9 million in losses to over 50 investors.

According to the statement of facts filed with the plea agreement, in 2009, Vaughn and co-conspirator Merrill Robertson, Jr., 36, of Chesterfield, started Cavalier Union Investments, LLC, and Black Bull Wealth management, LLC. From 2009-2016, Vaughn and Robertson solicited individuals to invest money in private investment funds that they managed, as well as distinct investment opportunities that they proposed. Robertson identified potential investors through various contacts; including contacts he developed playing football at Fork Union Military Academy, the University of Virginia, and the National Football League, while Vaughn focused on developing investment opportunities.

According to the statement of facts, Vaughn and Robertson led individuals to believe they have experienced investment advisors, and that they employed other experienced investment advisors to manage their investment funds. For example, Vaughn represented that he was a long-time investor and philanthropist with extensive experience in business and real estate. In fact, Vaughn filed for personal bankruptcy four times, including twice during the time he was soliciting investors for Cavalier.

As a result of this conspiracy, Vaughn and Robertson fraudulently obtained more than $9 million from over 50 investors, spending much of the money on their own personal living expenses, including mortgage and car payments, school tuitions, spa visits, restaurants, department stores, and vacations.

Vaughn faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison when sentenced on December 14. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Thomas Jankowski, Special Agent in Charge, Washington, D.C. Field Office, IRS-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI); Adam S. Lee, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Richmond Field Office; and Terrence P. McKeown, Inspector in Charge of the Washington Division of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, made the announcement after the guilty plea was accepted by U.S. District Judge John A. Gibney, Jr. Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine Lee Martin is prosecuting the case.

This investigation was initiated based on information received from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.  Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 3:16-cr-111.

Original PressReleases…

Financial Fraud: Josiah Larkin Convicted Of Tax Fraud

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Financial Fraud
Convicted Of Tax Fraud

San Francisco-Based Tax Preparer Convicted Of Tax Fraud

Defendant Owned Storefront in the Bayview/Hunter’s Point Neighborhood and Advertised Refunds for the Unemployed

SAN FRANCISCO – A federal jury convicted Josiah Larkin of conspiracy to file false claims and presenting false claims to the IRS, announced United States Attorney Brian J. Stretch and Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, Special Agent in Charge Michael T. Batdorf.  The guilty verdicts, reached yesterday, followed a six-day jury trial before the Honorable Susan Illston, U.S. District Court Judge.

Evidence at trial showed that Larkin, 40, of San Francisco, set up a storefront on Third Street in the Bayview/Hunter’s Point neighborhood of San Francisco in December of 2012.  Although not authorized to do so, he identified the shop as a Colbert Ball Tax franchise.  Larkin advertised “Get Up to $600- Even if Unemployed, On SSA or SSI.”  Larkin prepared false tax returns for clients, reporting that they had no income and that they paid $4,000 in qualified education expenses to attend college.  This combination of zero income and $4,000 in qualified education expenses resulted in a $1,000 tax refund based on the American Opportunity Tax Credit (“AOTC”).  Larkin took approximately half of the fraudulently-obtained tax refunds and gave the remaining half to his clients.  Larkin was indicted on January 6, 2015, and charged with one count of conspiracy to file false federal income tax returns as well as multiple counts of filing false claims and aiding and abetting filing false claims, all in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 286 and 287.  The jury found Larkin guilty of the conspiracy charge and five counts of filing false claims.

The fraudulent preparation of tax returns is an insidious drain on the public fisc,” said U.S. Attorney Brian J. Stretch.  “This office will continue to devote resources to prosecute those who seek to profit by submitting fraudulently prepared tax returns to the IRS.”

“Josiah Larkin’s verdict today marks another example of a tax return preparer who preyed on the vulnerable,” said Michael T. Batdorf, Special Agent in Charge IRS Criminal Investigation.  “He used personal identifying information to make a quick buck. Educating the public about these schemes is a continuing focus for IRS-CI.   Tax preparers should take note that if they attempt to defraud the IRS they will be caught and held accountable.”

Defendant’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for January 13, 2017, before Judge Illston.  The maximum statutory penalty for conspiracy to file false claims is ten years’ imprisonment and a fine of $250,000.  The maximum statutory penalty for presenting false claims to an agency of the United States is five years’ imprisonment and a fine of $250,000, plus restitution if appropriate.  However, any sentence will be imposed by the court only after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Cynthia Stier and Laurie Gray prosecuted the case.  The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service.

Original PressReleases…

Financial Fraud: SALVATORE CRIBARI Indicted And Charged For Wire Fraud With a Scheme to Defraud

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Financial Fraud
Wire Fraud With a Scheme to Defraud

Lake in the Hills Man Charged with $340,000 Scheme to Defraud

ROCKFORD — A Lake in the Hills, Ill. man appeared today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Iain D. Johnston on wire fraud charges.

SALVATORE CRIBARI, also known as “Sal Fradillio,” 59, was indicted on Sept. 13, 2016, by a federal grand jury in Rockford and charged with nine counts of wire fraud, in connection with a scheme to defraud “Company A,” an operator of a nationwide chain of home improvement stores. Cribari was arrested on Sept. 15, 2016, in Algonquin, Ill. Cribari pleaded not guilty during his arraignment today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Iain D. Johnston, and he was ordered detained pending a hearing scheduled for Sept. 19, 2016 at 1:00 p.m.

According to the indictment, Cribari knowingly and intentionally stole merchandise from Company A stores located in the Northern District of Illinois. The indictment alleges that Cribari returned the stolen merchandise to Company A without receipts, and he falsely and fraudulently presented the stolen merchandise as legitimately having been purchased from Company A. Cribari received store credit in the form of Company A gift cards during those non-receipted returns. The indictment alleges that Cribari fraudulently obtained more than $340,000 in Company A gift cards as part of the scheme to defraud, and Cribari subsequently used those gift cards to purchase over $310,000 of merchandise and services from Company A. It is alleged that Cribari provided over 1,300 false Illinois driver’s license and state identification numbers to conduct non-receipted returns of stolen merchandise at Company A.

Wire fraud carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, and a maximum fine of $250,000, or an alternate fine totaling twice the loss or twice the gain derived from the offense, whichever is greater.  The Court may also impose a sentence of probation of one to five years, a term of supervised release of up to three years, and restitution.  If Cribari is convicted, the court must impose a reasonable sentence under federal sentencing statutes and the advisory United States Sentencing Guidelines.

The public is reminded that an indictment contains only charges and is not evidence of guilt.  The defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

The indictment and arrest were announced by Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; and Michael J. Anderson, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of Federal Bureau of Investigation. The Lake Zurich and Lake in the Hills Police Departments provided assistance in the investigation.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Talia Bucci.

Indictment

Original PressReleases…

Email Scam Examples: GOOGLE YEARLY ANNIVERSARY

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GOOGLE ANNIVERSARY
GOOGLE YEARLY ANNIVERSARY

This is an email received about “ GOOGLE YEARLY ANNIVERSARY ” is a phishing scam and why not try to contact these people or log onto these sites and enter your data because you risk being stolen.

from:

GOOGLE YEARLY ANNIVERSARY

<orenliat@netvision.net.il>

reply-to:coordinatoredith65@yahoo.com.hk
to:
date:Sat, Aug 20, 2016 at 5:30 AM
subject:GOOGLE YEARLY ANNIVERSARY

GOOGLE CORPORATION THAILAND
Soi Soonvijai 7, New Petchburi road, Bangkapi,
bangkapi huaykwang 10310 Thailand
BANGKOK THAILAND

Winning No: GILP/5975/107/2016
Ticket No: GILP/3081/039/2016

GOOGLE YEARLY ANNIVERSARY WINNING NOTIFICATION
We wish to congratulate you on this note, for being part of our selected winners in our just concluded internal promotion draw this year, this promotion was set-up to encourage the active users of Google products and its software services.
Hence we do believe with your winning prize, you will continue to be an active patronage to Google products and its software services. Google Corporation develops and markets software, services, and hardware that deliver new opportunities, greater convenience, and enhanced value to people’s lives. We ran an online e-mail beta draw which your email address won One Million United States Dollar ( $1,000.000.00 USD). We wish to formally announce to you that you have successfully passed the requirements, statutory obligations, verifications, validations and satisfactory report Test conducted for all online winners.
A winning check will be issued in your name by Google Promotion Award; for the sum of One Million United States Dollar ( $1,000.000.00 USD) and also a certificate of the prize, claims will be sent alongside your winning check cashable at any bank.
You are advised to contact the assigned Google Program Administrator/Coordinator with the following details to avoid unnecessary delay and complications:
VERIFICATION AND FUNDS RELEASE FORM
(1) Your Contact Address/Private Email Address:
(2) Your Tel/Fax Numbers:
(3) Your Nationality/Country:
(4) Your Full Name:
(5) Occupation/Company:
(6) Age/Gender:

Mrs.Edith Nimlaoo
E-mail: coordinatoredith@gmail.com

Google values your right to privacy! Your information is 100% secured and will be used exclusively for the purpose of this award only.
The Google Promotion Award Team has discovered a huge number of double claims due to winners informing close friends relatives and third parties about their winning and also sharing their pin numbers. As a result of this, these friends try to claim the lottery on behalf of the real winners. The Google Promotion Award Team has reached a decision from its headquarters that any double claim discovered by the Lottery Board will result to the canceling of that particular winning, leading to a loss for both the double claimer and the real winner, as it is taken that the real winner was the informer to the double claimer about the lottery. So you are hereby strongly advised once more to keep your winnings strictly confidential until you claim your prize.
Congratulations from the Staffs & Members of the Google interactive Lotteries Board Commission.
Yours faithfully,
MD Matt Brittin,
Chairman of the Board and Managing Director,
2016Google Corporation.

Financial Fraud: Nayosha Aice Sentenced for Credit Card Fraud And Identity Theft

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Sentenced for Credit Card Fraud
Sentenced for Credit Card Fraud

New York women sentenced for credit card fraud

Over 75 counterfeit credit cards recovered during investigation

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Two New York City women were sentenced today for credit card fraud, announced United States Attorney Carol Casto. Sasha Nelson, 21, was sentenced to six months in federal prison, followed by three years of federal supervised release. Nayosha Aice, 25, was sentenced to five years of probation, with the first six months to be served on home incarceration, and ordered to pay a $1,000 fine. Both women previously pleaded guilty to possession of 15 or more counterfeit access devices. A counterfeit access device is a credit card that has been altered to contain stolen account information that is magnetically re-encoded on the credit card.

Nelson and Aice admitted that as part of their credit card fraud scheme, they possessed 78 counterfeit access devices. Nelson and Aice drove from New York City to West Virginia, using these counterfeit credit cards to buy cartons of Newport cigarettes and other merchandise. They were observed at the St. Albans Go-Mart using multiple counterfeit cards on June 25, 2015, buying cartons of cigarettes. After noticing the suspicious behavior, store employees contacted law enforcement. Nelson and Aice further admitted that once they realized officers were observing them, they attempted to get rid of the counterfeit credit cards in nearby stores by hiding the cards or throwing the cards in the garbage. Officers successfully recovered the credit cards and subsequently confirmed that the credit cards were counterfeit access devices.

Nelson also pleaded guilty in January 2016 in Virginia to the felony offenses of use of a stolen credit card and credit card fraud. Nelson received a suspended sentence in April 2016. Nelson’s plea in the Virginia state prosecution was based on criminal conduct from May 10, 2015, six weeks prior to the conduct in West Virginia. Nelson was stopped for speeding and was found to have 30 cartons of cigarettes, 44 counterfeit credit cards that were re-encoded with stolen credit card numbers, a laptop computer, and a credit card reader/re-encoder.

The St. Albans Police Department and the United States Secret Service conducted the investigation. Assistant United States Attorneys Erik S. Goes and Eric Bacaj are in charge of the prosecutions. United States District Judge John T. Copenhaver, Jr., imposed the sentences.

Original PressReleases…

Financial Fraud: James Seltzer Pleaded Guilty to Securities Fraud

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Securites Fraud
Securites Fraud

Former Securities Lawyer Pleads Guilty To Securities Fraud

Disbarred Marin attorney admits he defrauded investors of more than $2.5 million

SAN JOSE – James Seltzer, a former attorney and resident of Marin County, pleaded guilty to securities fraud, announced United States Attorney Brian Stretch, FBI Special Agent in Charge John F. Bennett, and Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, Special Agent in Charge Michael T. Batdorf.  The guilty plea was accepted yesterday by U.S. District Judge Lucy H. Koh.

According to the plea agreement, beginning no later than October of 2007 through at least May of 2011, Seltzer, 67, formerly of Belvedere, defrauded and deceived multiple individuals in connection with the purchase and sale of securities.  Seltzer admitted he misrepresented to the investors that he would use their money to make certain investments for their exclusive benefit but instead diverted the funds to other uses.  Seltzer acknowledged that in many cases, he diverted all or virtually all of the monies he had obtained from his investors and spent the monies on his own personal and business expenses after depositing the funds into his own personal bank accounts.  Seltzer further admitted that he had more than ten victims resulting in losses of more than $2,500,000.

Seltzer was indicted by a federal grand jury on June 18, 2015.  He was charged with five counts of securities fraud, in violation of 15 U.S.C. § 78; one count of mail fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1341; and three counts of money laundering, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1957. Pursuant to the plea agreement, Seltzer admitted his guilt to one count of securities fraud and the remaining counts were dismissed.  After being apprehended in Hawaii in September 2015, Seltzer was ordered to appear in San Jose to face the charges presented in the indictment.

The maximum term of imprisonment for securities fraud is 20 years.  Additional periods of supervised release, fines, and special assessments also could be imposed.    Any sentence following conviction would be imposed by the court only after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.  Seltzer remains free on a bond and is scheduled to appear before Judge Koh on February 15, 2017, for sentencing.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Timothy Lucey and Arvon Perteet are prosecuting the case with the assistance of Laurie Worthen.  The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the IRS-Criminal Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Healthcare Fraud: ROMY MACASAET JR. Admitted That he Paid Illegal Kickbacks to Procure Referrals of Elderly Patients on Medicare

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Healthcare Fraud
Healthcare Fraud

Owner of Illinois Home Health Company Admits Paying Illegal Kickbacks to 20 Medical Directors for Referrals of Medicare Patients

CHICAGO — The owner of a home health care company headquartered in Lemont admitted in federal court today that he paid illegal kickbacks to procure referrals of elderly patients on Medicare.

ROMY MACASAET JR. paid kickbacks to medical directors to obtain referrals of Medicare beneficiaries to his company, Home Bound Healthcare Inc., which was one of the largest home healthcare and hospice companies in Illinois.  Macasaet acknowledged in a plea agreement that he retained and paid Medical Directors a monthly fee solely for the purpose of obtaining patient referrals, and not for medical services.  Macasaet also acknowledged that he used Medical Director agreements as a way to conceal the payment of kickbacks.

Between approximately December 2006 and September 2014, Macasaet paid $789,327 in bribe payments to approximately 20 medical directors, according to the plea agreement.  As a result of the payments, Home Bound improperly sought and received Medicare reimbursements totaling several million dollars.

Macasaet, 47, of Homewood, pleaded guilty to one count of violating the Anti-Kickback Statute.  The conviction is punishable by up to five years in prison.  U.S. District Judge Samuel Der-Yeghiayan set sentencing for Feb. 15, 2017, at 10:30 a.m.

Macasaet and Home Bound also agreed to pay the United States $6.8 million to resolve the civil false claim and anti-kickback allegations, per the terms of a settlement agreement announced today.  The agreement settles claims that Home Bound and its subsidiaries violated the federal False Claims Act and Anti-Kickback Statute by obtaining referrals through illegal kickbacks that served as financial inducements for false certifications of eligibility for home health services, and by improperly submitting those false claims to Medicare for reimbursement.

As part of the civil settlement, Macasaet agreed to immediately resign his employment with Home Bound and refrain from seeking future employment with the company.  Macasaet further agreed to divest his ownership interest in Home Bound within 120 days of formal entry of the agreement.  The settlement was reached by the Justice Department on behalf of the Office of the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Contemporaneous to the settlement agreement, Home Bound and the HHS Inspector General’s Office entered into a corporate integrity agreement to promote compliance with the directives of Medicare, Medicaid, and other federal health care programs.  As part of the integrity agreement, Home Bound must establish a compliance program to develop and implement policies, procedures, and practices designed to ensure compliance with the requirements of federal health care programs.

The plea agreement and civil settlement were announced by Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Lamont Pugh III, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Regional Office of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General; and Michael J. Anderson, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  Substantial investigative assistance was provided by the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Inspector General, and the Chicago Field Office of the U.S. Department of State Diplomatic Security Service.

The government is represented in the criminal case by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sunil Harjani, and in the civil case by Assistant U.S. Attorney David R. Lidow.

Original PressReleases…

Healthcare Fraud: Andre Kirkland Sentenced For Defrauded Medicare and Medicaid

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Healthcare Fraud
Healthcare Fraud: Andre Kirkland Sentenced

Cleveland Mississippi Hospice Owner Sentenced for Healthcare Fraud and Ordered to Pay Over 5 Million Dollars in Restitution

Jackson, Miss – Andre Kirkland, 52, of Cleveland, Mississippi was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Oxford on September 1, 2016, on charges that he defrauded Medicare and Medicaid by signing up patients for hospice care who were not terminally ill, announced U.S. Attorney Gregory K. Davis, FBI Special Agent in Charge Donald Alway, Special Agent in Charge Derrick L. Jackson with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, and Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood.

Kirkland, who owned and operated Revelation Hospice in Clarksdale, pled guilty on May 4, 2016, to conspiracy to commit health care fraud. U.S. District Judge Michael Mills sentenced Kirkland to serve 48 months in home confinement in lieu of imprisonment due to recurrent metastatic cancer, which requires substantial medical care. Kirkland was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $5,400,843.50 to Medicare and $66,171.43 to Medicaid.

The investigation revealed that Andre Kirkland and Revelation Hospice were knowingly enrolling non-hospice eligible Medicaid and Medicare recipients and then filing false hospice claims to Medicaid and Medicare for services that were not medically necessary or were not ever provided. Kirkland, as a registered nurse and Revelation’s Director of Nursing, personally admitted non-hospice appropriate Medicaid and Medicare recipients into Revelation and deceived the patients about the true nature of the services in which they were being enrolled. As part of this deception, many patients unknowingly signed Do Not Resuscitate forms along with undated hospice revocation forms. Kirkland would later use the revocation forms to discharge patients from Revelation Hospice without the patient’s knowledge.

As the Director of Nursing for Revelation, Andre Kirkland was responsible for hospice admissions and the supervision of all nursing staff. He also treated patients in the field. According to patient interviews, Kirkland deceived patients about the true nature of the services they were being enrolled in and never told the patients that they were terminally ill. Most of the patients enrolled in hospice care were not terminally ill and were therefore not eligible for hospice care. For example, one of the patients enrolled was a 29-year-old pregnant female who was not terminally ill and was not in any way hospice eligible. She remains in good health today, years after Kirkland fraudulently enrolled her in hospice care.

A medical review of a 30-patient Medicare patient sample revealed that 100% of those patients were not eligible. The revelation had a live discharge rate of 93.30%, meaning that 93.30% of patients enrolled were discharged from Revelation Hospice while still living. By comparison, 2010 data shows that the national average live discharge rate for hospices is 18.2%.

“The health care fraud perpetrated by this defendant was an abuse of public trust motivated by greed. Patients were deceived into being signed up for services intended to help those with terminal illnesses. We remain committed to protecting the integrity of our health care system and will continue to strictly enforce our federal health care laws,” said U.S. Attorney Gregory K. Davis.

“Health care fraud costs our country billions of dollars each year, and the FBI will continue to seek out those that extort health care in the United States,” said Donald Alway, special agent in charge of the FBI in Mississippi. “These are not victimless crimes because health care fraud harms our overall economy. The FBI and our partners are committed to identifying and charging those that engage in this type of activity.”

“Hospice fraud has reached epidemic proportions in Northern Mississippi,” said Derrick L. Jackson, Special Agent in Charge at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General. “Patients are being falsely diagnosed as terminally ill in order to line the pockets of hospice owners who are treating Medicare like their own personal ATM.”

“Joint investigations have proven to be an essential tool in the fight against fraud in health care benefit programs,” Attorney General Jim Hood said. “We will continue to work with our federal and state partners in this ongoing battle to protect our most vulnerable citizens.”

The case was investigated by the United States Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General, the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit of the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Dave Fulcher.

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Identity Theft: Francisco Matos-Beltre And Alejandro Tello-Rojas Commit Human Smuggling for Financial Gain And Trafficking the Identities

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Identity Trafficking Scheme
Identity Trafficking Scheme

Two Men Plead Guilty for Their Roles in Identity Trafficking Scheme

Two individuals each pleaded guilty today to one count of conspiracy to commit identification fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit human smuggling for financial gain in relation to their respective roles in trafficking the identities of Puerto Rican U.S. citizens and corresponding identity documents.

Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Rosa E. Rodríguez-Vélez of the District of Puerto Rico, Director Sarah R. Saldaña of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Chief Postal Inspector Guy J. Cottrell of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), Director Bill A. Miller of the U.S. State Department’s Diplomatic Security Service (DSS) and Chief Richard Weber of the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI) made the announcement.

Francisco Matos-Beltre, 42, a U.S. citizen formerly of Philadelphia, and Alejandro Tello-Rojas, aka Joel Ocasio-Cancel, aka William Davila, 36, a Mexican citizen formerly of Lawrenceville, Georgia, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Juan M. Perez-Gimenez of the District of Puerto Rico.  On Aug. 6, 2015, Matos-Beltre, an identity document supplier, and Tello-Rojas, an identity document broker, were charged in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Puerto Rico.  To date, 14 individuals have been charged for their roles in the identity trafficking scheme, eight defendants have pleaded guilty and six individuals remain fugitives.

According to admissions made in connection with today’s pleas, identity document runners located in the Savarona area of Caguas, Puerto Rico, obtained Puerto Rican identities and corresponding identity documents.  Other conspirators, identified as identity document suppliers and brokers, were located in various cities throughout the United States and allegedly solicited customers for the sale of social security cards and corresponding Puerto Rico birth certificates for prices ranging from $700 to $2,500 per set, the defendants admitted.  The defendants acknowledged that the conspirators used text messages, money transfer services, and U.S. mail to complete their illicit transactions.

The defendants also admitted that they sold Puerto Rican identity documents to  customers, who generally obtained the identity documents to assume the identity of Puerto Rican U.S. citizens and to obtain additional identification documents, such as legitimate state driver’s licenses.  Some customers obtained the documents to commit financial fraud and attempted to obtain a U.S. passport, according to the plea agreements.  At the time of his arrest, Tello-Rojas had assumed the identity of Ocasio-Cancel, a Puerto Rican U.S. citizen.

The Chicago offices of ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), USPIS, DSS and IRS-CI led the investigation, dubbed Operation Island Express II, with assistance from the HSI San Juan Office and the DSS Resident Office in Puerto Rico.  The HSI Assistant Attaché office in the Dominican Republic and International Organized Crime Intelligence and Operations Center provided invaluable support with assistance from ICE, USPIS, DSS and IRS-CI offices around the country.

Trial Attorneys Marianne Shelvey of the Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Gang Section and Frank Rangoussis of the Criminal Division’s Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section are prosecuting the case.  The U.S. Attorney’s Office of the District of Puerto Rico is providing assistance in this matter.

Potential victims and the public may obtain information about the case at www.justice.gov/criminal/vns/caseup/beltrerj.html.  Anyone who believes their identity may have been compromised in relation to this investigation or who may have information about particular crimes, in this case, should call the ICE toll-free hotline at 1-866-DHS-2ICE (1-866-347-2423) or use its online tip form at www.ice.gov/tipline.

Anyone who believes that they have been a victim of identity theft, or wants information about preventing identity theft, may obtain helpful information and complaint forms on various government websites including the Federal Trade Commission ID Theft Website, www.ftc.gov/idtheft.  Additional resources regarding identity theft can be found at www.ojp.usdoj.gov/ovc/pubs/ID_theft/idtheft.html; www.ssa.gov/pubs/10064.html;  and www.irs.gov/privacy/article/0,,id=186436,00.html.

Original PressReleases…

Investment Fraud: BRYAN LEE ADDINGTON Indicted For Identity Theft, Securities, Commodities, & Investment Fraud

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Financial Fraud
Securities, Commodities, & Investment Fraud

Federal Grand Jury Indicts Ethel Businessman For Investor Fraud Scheme Worth Over $3.5 Million

BATON ROUGE, LA – United States Attorney Walt Green announced today the unsealing of an Indictment against BRYAN LEE ADDINGTON, age 55, of Ethel, Louisiana.  The Indictment charges the defendant with five counts of mail fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1341, and one count of aggravated identity theft, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1028A.  The Indictment also includes a forfeiture allegation that will require the defendant to forfeit the proceeds of his fraud if convicted.

The Indictment alleges that the defendant engaged in a scheme to defraud numerous victim-investors from January 2010 through at least April 2016.  According to the Indictment, the defendant solicited and obtained over $3.5 million from his victims.  To induce the victims into investing with him, ADDINGTON falsely represented to his victims that their money would be invested in real estate and land, insurance products, and stock, and would be used to purchase insurance policies.  He allegedly represented that such investments were safe and would yield good returns and that they would, in some cases, bring guaranteed returns.  Meanwhile, according to the Indictment, ADDINGTON allegedly hid from his victims that the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority had permanently barred him from acting as a broker or otherwise associating with firms that sell securities to the public.

According to the Indictment, once ADDINGTON was in control of the victim investors’ funds, he diverted a substantial portion of the funds to his own personal use, the use of others, and to make payments to other victim investors.  Examples of his personal use including spending at Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Galatoire’s Bistro, Victoria’s Secret, Disney Resort, various casinos, and thousands of dollars in purchases of Louisiana State University athletic tickets.

This matter is being handled by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Louisiana, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation Division, and the Louisiana Office of Financial Institutions, in coordination with the Louisiana Department of Insurance and Louisiana State Police.  It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Ryan Rezaei and Ryan Crosswell.

NOTE: An indictment is an accusation by the Grand Jury.  The defendant is presumed innocent until and unless adjudicated guilty at trial or through a guilty plea.

Original PressReleases…

Financial Fraud: Brian K. Stepp Charged To Commit Fraudulent Financial Schemes

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Fraudulent Financial Schemes
Fraudulent Financial Schemes

Medina man indicted for stealing $275,000 from employer, using money to pay for vehicles, country club membership

A Medina man was named in a 22-count indictment, charged with stealing approximately $275,000 from his employer and using the money to pay for a country club membership, vehicles and purchases at Victoria’s Secret and GNC, law enforcement officials said.

Brian K. Stepp, 50, was charged with multiple counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, making false statements and other charges. Rachel M. Penn, 41, of Wellington, was also indicted on charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and wire fraud.

“These defendants used this company’s coffers like their own personal bank, stealing from their employer to provide for a lavish lifestyle,” U.S. Attorney Carole S. Rendon said.

“These two conspired in a variety of fraudulent financial schemes to steal money for car and country club membership purchases and exorbitant retail purchases,” said Stephen D. Anthony, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Cleveland office. “The FBI will continue to root out financial fraudsters and hold them accountable for their criminal actions.”

Stepp and Penn worked together at Variety Contractors, Inc., a company based in Medina County that provided general contracting services for large public and commercial retail construction projects in Ohio and other states.

Stepp joined the company as vice president and eventually was promoted to acting president, although the company owner retained ultimate decision-making authority. Penn worked in the company’s accounting department. Her duties included reviewing expense claims submitted by employees and issuing reimbursement checks, according to the indictment.

Stepp and Penn conspired together between February 2014 and May 2015 to defraud Variety Contractors.

Stepp incorporated S&S Kelsey LN, a shell company that did not engage in any actual business. He submitted a variety of fake invoices from S&S and other vendors to Variety Contractors of goods and services that were not provided. Stepp and Penn caused Variety Contractors to make payments on those fraudulent invoices, according to the indictment.

For example, in September 2014, a check request for $31,500 was made for payment to G.C.I. for “Deposit for Exterior Metal Panels”. Three days later, Penn issued a check in the same amount made payable to Ganley, which Penn knew that Stepp used to partially pay for a 2015 Chevy Silverado pickup truck that he purchased in his wife’s name, according to the indictment.

Stepp also fraudulently used a company credit card to pay for personal expenses, such as membership and related fees at Weymouth Country Club, payments made to purchase vehicles to himself and his family, local hotel charges, legal fees, and charges at stores including Victoria’s Secret and GNC, according to the indictment.

The loss to Variety Contractors was approximate $275,000, according to the indictment.

Stepp also made numerous false statements in attempting to get several loans, according to the indictment.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Rebecca Lutzko following an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

If convicted, the defendant’s sentence will be determined by the Court after reviewing factors unique to this case, including the defendant’s prior criminal record, if any, the defendant’s role in the offense and the characteristics of the violation.  In all cases, the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases, it will be less than the maximum.

An indictment is not evidence of guilt.  Defendants are entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Original PressReleasess…

Financial Fraud: RANDY MILAND Guilty Plea For Operating a Ponzi Scheme

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Ponzi Scheme
Ponzi Scheme

Serial Fraudster Pleads Guilty to Investment Advisor Fraud and Money Laundering

United States Attorney Andrew M. Luger today announced the guilty plea of RANDY MILAND, 62, for operating a Ponzi scheme through which he stole or attempted to steal more than $500,000 from purported investors. MILAND pleaded guilty today before United States District Judge Wilhelmina M. Wright in U.S. District Court in St. Paul, Minn.

“Randy Miland is a serial scam artist who has had a long career of defrauding his victims with false claims that he would use their money for legitimate investments,” said Minnesota Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman. “He may once have worked as a chiropractor, but his real profession has been operating Ponzi schemes to steal people’s money. The Commerce Fraud Bureau worked with federal authorities to stop Miland’s criminal activities and prevent even more Minnesotans from being ripped off by him.”

“Today’s guilty plea of Randy Miland demonstrates how law enforcement cooperatively works together to help put an end to the criminal behavior of those who prey on investors for their personal financial gain,” said Special Agent in Charge Shea Jones of St. Paul Field Office IRS Criminal Investigation. “IRS Special Agents will continue to use their financial expertise to identify and trace laundered funds in these types of investor fraud schemes.”

“Despite two prior convictions, Randy Miland continued to steal from friends and acquaintances through lies and misrepresentations,” said Assistant United States Attorney Joseph H. Thompson. “The Minnesota Department of Commerce and Criminal Investigation Division of the IRS worked together to investigate this case and put an end to Miland’s fraudulent conduct.”

According to the defendant’s guilty plea, between 2010 and 2014, MILAND fraudulently solicited approximately $575,000 from investors, telling them that he would use their money to invest in futures and other legitimate investments. Instead, he used their money to pay personal expenses, including court-ordered restitution to victims of his prior scams, and to make Ponzi-type payments to other purported investors.

MILAND concealed from the new victims that he had been twice convicted of fraudulent conduct, that he was forbidden by the Minnesota Department of Commerce from offering or selling securities, and that he still owed more than $1.5 million in restitution to victims of prior schemes.

MILAND was convicted in 1999 in state court of theft by swindle and ordered to pay more than $1.5 million in restitution to the victims of his scheme. As of May 2016, MILAND still owed to the victims nearly the entire amount.

MILAND was convicted in 2006 in federal court of fraud and ordered to pay more than $250,000 in restitution to the victims. As of May 2016, MILAND owed approximately $124,000 in restitution.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Joseph H. Thompson.

This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the Criminal Investigation Division of the IRS and the Minnesota Department of Commerce Fraud Bureau.
Defendant Information:

RANDY MILAND, 62
White Bear Lake, Minn.

Convicted:
• Mail fraud, 1 count
• Money laundering, 1 count

Original PressReleases…

Financial Fraud: KIRSTEN ANN TJOSAAS Sentenced For Wire Fraud & Money Laundering

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Wire Fraud & Money Laundering
Wire Fraud & Money Laundering

Former CFO Of Granite Falls Industrial Contractor Sentenced To More Than Six Years In Prison For Embezzling Nearly $6 Million

United States Attorney Andrew M. Luger today announced the sentencing of KIRSTEN ANN TJOSAAS, 38, for embezzling $5,773,410 from Fagen, Inc. (Fagen), an industrial contracting company for which she served as Chief Financial Officer. TJOSAAS pleaded guilty on May 6, 2016, to wire fraud and money laundering.

According to her guilty plea, between 2006 and November 2015, TJOSAAS abused her authority as Corporate Controller and Chief Financial Officer of Fagen to issue at least 19 checks and make wire transfers totaling approximately $4.5 million from Fagen to Fairmont Investments, LLC (Fairmont), a Nebraska-based corporation controlled by the defendant.

According to her guilty plea, after registering Fairmont, TJOSAAS opened a bank account at Granite Falls Bank in the name of Fairmont for the purpose of embezzling money from Fagen. TJOSAAS signed these checks using the signature stamp of another Fagen executive without the authority or knowledge of that executive. The defendant also entered false entries into Fagen’s general ledger to disguise the illegitimate checks as payments to Fagen partners or payments to legitimate Fagen vendors. After depositing checks into the Fairmont account, TJOSAAS transferred the funds she had stolen into her own personal bank accounts.

According to her guilty plea, TJOSAAS also fraudulently issued Fagen checks payable to another company. TJOSAAS had access to and control over the bank account of this company. Between June 2006 and November 2015, TJOSAAS issued approximately 25 fraudulent checks into this account, totaling more than $1.2 million.

TJOSAAS used the illicit proceeds to buy homes in Florida, Minnesota, Kentucky, and Arizona. She purchased time-shares in Arizona and the U.S. Virgin Islands, as well as at least three automobiles, two all-terrain vehicles, a motorcycle, a jet-ski, and a sailboat.

TJOSAAS spent more than $500,000 of the stolen money on travel, including $346,000 on airplane tickets, $213,000 on hotel stays and more than $90,000 in restaurants.

This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the FBI.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph H. Thompson prosecuted the case.

 

Defendant Information:

KIRSTEN ANN TJOSAAS, 38

Granite Falls, Minn.

Convicted:

  • Wire fraud, 1 count
  • Money laundering, 1 count

 

Sentenced:

  • 78 months in prison
  • 3 years supervised release
  • $5,773,420 in restitution

Original PressReleases…

Financial Fraud: Wright Olivares And Daniel C. Olivares Sentenced For Million Internet Ponzi Scheme

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Financial Fraud Senteced
Million Internet Ponzi Scheme

ZeekRewards’ Former Chief Operating Officer And Former Senior Technology Officer Sentenced In Federal Court

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – U.S. District Judge Max Cogburn, Jr., sentenced Dawn Wright Olivares, 48, and Daniel C. Olivares, 34, both of Clarksville, Ark., to 90 and 24 months in prison, respectively, for their involvement in an $850 million Internet Ponzi scheme that promised victims a bogus return on investments, announced Jill Westmoreland Rose, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina.

The two Arkansas residents were associated with the Lexington, N.C. based Rex Venture Group, LLC (RVG), which owned and operated Zeekler and ZeekRewards.  In addition to the prison term imposed, Judge Cogburn also ordered each defendant to serve three years under court supervision.  The restitution amount will be set at a later date.

Michael Rolin, Special Agent in Charge of the United States Secret Service, Charlotte Field Division and Thomas J. Holloman III, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division (IRS-CI) join U.S. Attorney Rose in making today’s announcement.

According to filed court documents and today’s sentencing hearings, from January 2010 through August 2012, Dawn Wright Olivares, her stepson, Daniel Olivares, and Paul Burks, the owner of RVG, conspired with each other and engaged in Ponzi scheme that raised more than $850 million through a sham internet-based penny auction company named “Zeekler” and its purported advertising division “ZeekRewards” (collectively “Zeek”).  According to court records, the conspirators induced more than 900,000 victims – including over 1,500 victims in the Charlotte area – to invest in their fraudulent scheme, by falsely representing that Zeekler was generating massive retail profits from its penny auctions and that the public could share in such profits through investment in ZeekRewards.  Court documents indicate that, at one point, the conspirators claimed that investors would be guaranteed a 125% return on their investment.

Court records show that the co-conspirators represented that victim-investors in ZeekRewards could participate in the Retail Profit Pool (RPP), which supposedly allowed victims collectively to share 50% of Zeek’s daily net profits.  The co-conspirators did not keep books and records needed to calculate such daily figures.  Instead, Burks simply made up the daily “profit” numbers.  Contrary to the conspirators’ claims, the true revenue from the scheme did not come from the penny auction’s “massive profits.”  Instead, approximately 98% of all incoming funds came from victim-investors, which were then used to make Ponzi-style payments to earlier victim investors.

In addition to promising massive returns on investments, the conspirators used a number of ways to promote Zeek to current and potential investors.  For example, the conspirators hosted weekly conference calls and leadership calls, where participants could call in and listen to Burks, Dawn Wright Olivares, and others make false representations intended to encourage victim-investors to continue to invest money and to recruit others to invest in Zeek.  Burks and Dawn Wright Olivares also organized and attended “Red Carpet Events,” where victim investors came to hear details of the scheme in person.  During these events, Burks and his conspirators made false representations about the massive retail profits generated by Zeek.  They also used electronic and print media, including websites, emails, and journals, to make false and misleading statements about the success of Zeekler to recruit victim investors.

As the Ponzi scheme grew in size and scope it became unsustainable and it eventually began to unravel as the outstanding liability resulting from the bogus 125% return on investment continued to rise beyond control.  By August 2012, the conspirators fraudulently represented to the collective victims that their investments were worth nearly $3 billion, but had no accurate books and records to even determine how much cash on hand was available to pay such liability.  Contrary to representations made to victim investors, at that time, the conspirators had only $340 million available to pay out investors.

According to court records, Dawn Wright Olivares was closely involved in the strategic operations and ultimately served as the Chief Operations Officer of Zeek.  Dawn Wright Olivares also owned 95% of Wandering Phoenix, LLC, a company that she used, among other things, to receive payments from Zeek and RVG.  During the course of the conspiracy, Dawn Wright Olivares and Wandering Phoenix received approximately $7.2 million in victim funds.

Daniel Olivares was RVG’s senior technology officer and was responsible for, among other things, database design, management, and operations for Zeek.  During the course of the conspiracy, Daniel Olivares personally enriched himself with victim funds totaling approximately $3.1 million.  Other unnamed co-conspirators also personally enriched themselves with millions of dollars of victim funds.

Dawn Wright Olivares and Dan Olivares previously pleaded guilty to one count of investment fraud conspiracy.  Dawn Wright Olivares also pleaded guilty to one count of tax fraud conspiracy.

In July 2016, a federal jury convicted Paul Burks of wire and mail fraud conspiracy, wire and mail fraud, and tax fraud conspiracy, following a three-week trial.  Burks is currently awaiting sentencing.

In making today’s announcement, U.S. Attorney Rose thanked the U.S. Secret Service and IRS-CI for investigating the case, and the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission, Division of Enforcement for its assistance with the investigation.

The prosecution is handled by Assistant United States Attorneys Jenny Grus Sugar and Corey Ellis of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Charlotte.

Original PressReleases…

Email Scam Example: SECRETARY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

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JANET NAPOLITANO
JANET NAPOLITANO

This is an email received about “ SECRETARY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY ” is a phishing scam and why not try to contact these people or log onto these sites and enter your data because you risk being stolen.

 

JANET NAPOLITANO
JANET NAPOLITANO

 

from:JANET NAPOLITANO <sisbrownbrown@gmail.com>
reply-to:united_embassy4@ymail.com
to:
bcc:atum101@gmail.com
date:Tue, Sep 13, 2016 at 4:41 PM
subject:SECRETARY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
mailed-by:gmail.com
signed-by:gmail.com

 

 

 


 

GOOD DAY TO YOU.

I HOPE THIS MAIL FINDS YOU IN GOOD SPIRIT AND IN GOOD HEALTH? BECAUSE I AM QUITE AWARE OF YOUR LOSSES IN THE PAST YEARS NOW, IT MAY SURPRISE YOU THAT I AM ALSO AWARE OF YOUR CONSIGNMENT BOXES PURSUIT IN BENIN GHANA TOGO NIGERIA SPAIN-FRANCE MALAYSIA INDONESIA CHINA AND KOREA .MY NAME IS MRS. JANET NAPOLITANO,THE SECRETARY OF U.S DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY OF AMERICA , AM IN CHARGE TO MONITORED ALL FOREIGN TRANSACTIONS IN AFRICA EUROPE AND ASIA.

I HAVE BEEN IN THE U.S DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY NOW SINCE THE GOVERNMENT OF PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA, MONITORING THE VARIOUS TRANSACTIONS GOING ON IN AFRICA, EUROPE AND ASIA, MOST ESPECIALLY CONSIGNMENTS CASES AND BANK TRANSFER. I DO NOT INTEND TO SPOIL YOUR DAY OR TO PUT YOU UNDER DURESS.

BUT YOU CAN NOT RECEIVE ANY OF YOUR CONSIGNMENTS BOXES PURSUIT, WITHOUT A CLEARANCE FROM THE U.S DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY. HOWEVER, UPON MY ARRIVAL IN BENIN REPUBLIC AFTER SERIES OF MEETINGS WITH OUR PRESIDENT BARRACKS OBAMA AND UNITED NATIONS SECRETARY GENERAL BAN KI-MOON, DUE TO NUMEROUS COMPLAINS FROM OTHER SECURITY AGENCIES FROM AFRICA ASIA, EUROPE, OCEANIA, ANTARCTICA,SOUTH AMERICA AND THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA RESPECTIVELY, AGAINST THE BENIN GOVERNMENT AND NIGERIA OVER THE RATE OF SCAM/FRAUDULENT ACTIVITIES GOING ON IN THIS COUNTRY AND AFRICA.

WHEN I ARRIVE IN THE BENIN PARLIAMENT IN COTONOU, I FOUND YOUR CONSIGNMENT BOX CLEARANCE FILE LYING ON THE FOREIGN AFFAIR OFFICE DESK WITHOUT ANY ATTENTION ON A THOROUGH SCRUTINY I DISCOVERED THAT YOUR CONSIGNMENT HAVE BEEN ABANDONED BY YOUR DELIVERY AGENT. MEANWHILE, I WAS MADE TO UNDERSTAND THAT THEY HAVE TO TRY TO REACH YOU, BUT NO WAY AND THEY HAVE MADE SEVERAL ATTEMPTS TO CONTACT YOUR DELIVERY AGENT BUT TO NO AVAIL.

TO MY GREATEST SURPRISE, DURING MY RECENT ROUTINE RE-CHECKING, I PERSONALLY DISCOVERED THAT YOUR CONSIGNMENT CONTENT DECLARATION DOCUMENTS STATED THAT YOUR CONSIGNMENT CONTAINS PERSONAL EFFECTS MEANWHILE, IT CONTAINS UNITED STATES DOLLAR BILLS WORTH OVER US$40 MILLION DOLLARS, WHICH MADE IT IMPOSSIBLE FOR THE CONSIGNMENT TO BE DELIVERED TO YOU EARLIER BEFORE NOW.

BASED ON THIS PERSONAL DISCOVERY, I AM CONTACTING YOU NOW TO LET YOU KNOW THAT WITH MY POSITION AND POWER AS THE SECRETARY OF U.S DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY, I CAN ASSIST YOU TO LEGALLY CLEAR YOUR CONSIGNMENT FUND, BUT YOU MUST AGREE WITH THE FOLLOWING CONDITIONS. BECAUSE I HAVE CALLED OUR OFFICE IN WASHINGTON,DC FROM BENIN, WHO HAS BEEN INTERCEPTING ALL YOUR TELEPHONE CALLS, WITH THE HELP OF MTN, TIGO VODAFONE, AND AIR-TEL NETWORK BENIN.

I ALSO RECEIVED SOME INFORMATION FROM OUR HOMELAND SECURITY OFFICE IN BENIN REPUBLIC, ABOUT YOUR EMAILS, THAT YOU HAVE BEEN DEALING AND SENDING MONEY TO PEOPLES IN BENIN GHANA SOUTH AFRICA TOGO BENIN AND NIGERIA , WHO CLAIMS TO BE THE WESTERN UNION DIRECTOR. YOU ARE ALSO DEALING WITH A BANK AND OTHER NAMES WHICH I AM STILL WAITING TO BE FORWARDED TO ME FROM OUR OFFICE IN WASHINGTON,DC. WHO HAVE MONITORED ALL YOUR DEALINGS WITH THIS HOODLUM.

YOU ARE ADVICE TO HENCE FORT STOP FURTHER DEALINGS WITH ALL THE ABOVE MENTIONED PEOPLE, UNTIL WE COMPLETE OUR INVESTIGATION.

BECAUSE YOUR DEALING WITH THEM IS TERMED AS ILLEGAL TRANSACTION. I WISH TO INFORM THAT WE THE HOMELAND SECURITY IS ON LOOK OUT FOR ALL
THE ABOVE MENTIONED NAME, MOSTLY THOSE WHO CLAIMS TO BE THE DIRECTOR OF WEST AFRICAN DEBT WESTERN UNION AND MONEY GRAM AND PROPERTY RECOVERY BENIN. ALL THIS MENTIONED PEOPLE ARE IMPOSTOR, AND WE INTEND TO APPREHEND THEM SOON.

I WANT YOU TO PLEASE STOP COMMUNICATING, AND DEALING WITH THEM UNTIL WE COMPLETE OUR INVESTIGATION. I WISH TO NOTIFY YOU ABOUT THE LATEST DEVELOPMENT CONCERNING YOUR BOX OF CONSIGNMENT THAT WAS HANDLE OVER TO ME AFTER THE MEETING HELD BETWEEN ME AND SOME OF THE TOP PARLIAMENT MEMBERS OF BENIN AND THE FOREIGN AFFAIR MINSTER IN THE BENIN CAPITAL HEADQUARTERS COTONOU, DUE TO THE DELAY FOR YOU NOT HAVE RECEIVED YOUR CONSIGNMENT BOX FOR LONG TIME NOW.

ACCORDINGLY, WE HAVE WAIVED AWAY ALL YOUR CONSIGNMENT BOX CLEARANCE FEES AND AUTHORIZED THE GOVERNMENT OF BENIN REPUBLIC TO ALLOW ME FLY WITH THIS YOUR APPROVED CONSIGNMENT BOX TO YOU WITHOUT ANY DELAY WHICH THEY HAVE AGREED. THE ONLY FEE YOU WILL PAY TO CONFIRM YOUR CONSIGNMENT BOX RECEIVED IN YOUR POSSESSION IS THE WEIGHT FEE OF YOUR CONSIGNMENT BOX WHICH IS SUM OF $65.00 ONLY.

IN ORDER WORDS YOUR BOX IS WITH ME NOW AND I SHALL BE COMING TO YOUR COUNTRY AS SOON AS I HEAR FROM YOU AND I WILL BE COMING ALONG WITH YOUR BOX OF CONSIGNMENT,BUT REMEMBER THAT AS THE SECRETARY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, I AM A US GOVERNMENT SECURITY AGENT AND I HAVE THE POWER TO GO THROUGH ANY AIRPORT CUSTOMS WITHOUT INSPECTING WHAT I CARRY ALONG.

AND AS SOON AS I ARRIVE IN YOUR STATE I WILL GIVE YOU A PHONE CALL FOR YOU TO GIVE ME DIRECTION TO YOUR HOME ADDRESS SO THAT WE CAN MEET FACE TO FACE AND HAND OVER YOUR BOX TO YOU BEFORE PROCEEDING BACK TO THE STATES. SO I WANT YOU TO RE-CONFIRM TO ME THE BELOW INFORMATION FOR PROPER UNDERSTANDING BY FILLING THE ATTACH HOMELAND SECURITY REGISTRATION FORM OKAY.

BENEFICIARY NAME:……………………………
ADDRESS:……………………………………………
TEL PHONE:…………………………………………
OCCUPATION:……………………………………..
COUNTRY:……………………………………………
SEX:……………………………………………………..

AS SOON AS I ARRIVE I SHALL CALL YOU ON YOUR TELEPHONE NUMBER THEN MEET YOU IN PERSON AND HAND OVER YOUR CONSIGNMENT BOX TO YOU BEFORE I RETURN BACK TO WASHINGTON DC.

I HAVE TAKEN THIS ASSIGNMENT UPON MYSELF BECAUSE I UNDERSTAND THAT YOU HAVE REALLY PAID SO MUCH ON THE COST OF DELIVERY, BUT NOTHING WAS RECEIVED BY YOU. SO BE ADVICE TO CONTACT ME IMMEDIATELY YOU GET THIS EMAIL NOW BECAUSE EVERYTHING HAS BEEN DONE OK. THIS IS DIRECTLY FROM OUR PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA.

ONCE YOU SEND THE MONEY, TRY TO NOTIFY ME WITH THE MTCN FOR EASY PICK UP AND FOR IMMEDIATE ACTION ON THE DELIVERY OF YOUR CONSIGNMENT BOX,FOR YOU TO RECEIVE YOUR INHERITED FUNDS WITHOUT ANY FURTHER DELAY AGAIN . SINCE YOU WAS UNABLE TO RECEIVE IT SINCE .

SEND THE FEE VIA MONEY GRAM MONEY TRANSFER.

RECEIVER’S NAME:…………OSE PAUL
COUNTRY:……….. BENIN REPUBLIC
CITY:……………..COTONOU
AMOUNT:……….$65.00
QUESTION:……..WHEN
ANSWER:………….NOW
MTCN:……..

SENDER’s NAME:………
SENDER’S ADDRESS:……

AS SOON AS YOU SEND THE FEE MAKE SURE YOU SEND ME THE PAYMENT INFORMATION.ONCE YOU SEND THE MONEY, TRY TO NOTIFY ME WITH THE MTCN FOR CONFIRMATION AND FOR IMMEDIATE ACTION ON THE HANDLING OVER OF YOUR FUND TO YOU. ALSO YOU ARE TO FORWARD TO US ANY MAIL THAT YOU HAVE BEEN RECEIVING FROM PEOPLE FOR PROPER VERIFICATION AND INVESTIGATION

Financial Fraud: Evans Appiah Sentenced from an Internet Romance Scheme – Mail and Wire Fraud, Identity Theft

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Internet Romance Scheme
Internet Romance Scheme

Silver Spring Man Sentenced To 7 Years In Federal Prison For Internet Romance Scheme In Which Victims Were Defrauded Of Over $300,000

Greenbelt, Maryland – U.S. District Judge George J. Hazel sentenced  Evans Appiah, a/k/a Sean Carter, age 28, of Silver Spring, Maryland, on September 12, 2016, to seven years in prison, followed by four years of supervised release, for conspiracy, mail and wire fraud, and aggravated identity theft arising from an internet romance scheme in which the victims were defrauded of more than $300,000.  Judge Hazel also ordered Appiah to forfeit and pay restitution of $303,800.11, the total amount of the loss.  Appiah has been detained since Judge Hazel ordered that he be immediately taken into custody following the jury’s guilty verdict on May 4, 2016.

The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Andre R. Watson of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); Special Agent in Charge James Murray of the United States Secret Service – Washington Field Office; and Chief J. Thomas Manger of the Montgomery County Police Department.

According to testimony at his six day trial, Appiah and his co-conspirators searched online dating websites and initiated romantic relationships with male and female victims in order to obtain money from them.  The relationships began with emails and instant messaging and escalated to telephone calls and primarily text messages.  After gaining the victims trust, Appiah and his co-conspirators began asking for money for a variety of reasons, often invoking false stories and promises to convince the victims to send them money.

According to evidence presented at trial, from December 2013 through June 2015, Appiah opened and maintained accounts in order to receive money from the victims.  Once the victims had deposited the funds requested by Appiah and the co-conspirators into the accounts controlled by Appiah, he disbursed the money by transferring it to other accounts, withdrawing cash, and by purchasing goods for shipment to co-conspirators outside of the United States.  At least eleven confirmed victims were defrauded of more than $300,000.

Appiah also used the name and identifying information of one victim in particular, while depositing one of the victim cashier’s checks into his own bank account.

Today’s announcement is part of the efforts undertaken in connection with the President’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force.  The task force was established to wage an aggressive, coordinated and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes.  With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. attorneys’ offices, and state and local partners, it’s the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud.  Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets; and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions and other organizations.  Since fiscal year 2009, the Justice Department has filed over 18,000 financial fraud cases against more than 25,000 defendants.  For more information on the task force, please visit www.StopFraud.gov.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended HSI Baltimore, the U.S. Secret Service and Montgomery County Police Department for their work in the investigation.  Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas P. Windom and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer L. Wine, who prosecuted the case.

Original PressReleases…

Identity Theft: Angelbert Evoulou Sentenced For A Stolen Identity Refund Scheme

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Stolen Identity Refund Scheme
Stolen Identity Refund Scheme

Man Convicted at Trial on Offenses Related to a Stolen Identity Refund Scheme is Sentenced to 57 Months in Federal Prison

DALLAS — Angelbert Evoulou was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Sam A. Lindsay to 57 months in federal prison following his conviction at trial in May 2016 on several offenses related to a stolen identity refund scheme, announced U.S. Attorney John Parker of the Northern District of Texas.

Specifically, the jury convicted Evoulou of Conspiracy, Theft of Public Funds, Interstate Transportation of a Stolen Security, and Aggravated Identity Theft.

The government presented evidence at trial that during the investigation of a stolen refund ring, an individual advised an undercover special agent with Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Criminal Investigation that he could sell him an IRS refund check of approximately $595,000.  After confirming the refund check was genuine and then arranging the purchase, two undercover agents met with Evoulou and three co-conspirators at an IHOP restaurant in Dallas at 1:00 in the morning on May 16, 2013.  Evoulou and the coconspirators had flown in from Atlanta several hours earlier with the check.  At the restaurant, Evoulou pulled out a magazine in which he had concealed the check. To prove the legitimacy of the refund check, he gave the undercover agent screenshots from an internal IRS database showing details about the victim taxpayer. When two of the conspirators stepped outside to retrieve the purchase money to pay the undercover agents, IRS agents converged to arrest the participants.  Evoulou managed to elude arrest by exiting the restaurant with a group patrons of the restaurant.

The other conspirators were arrested and charged with federal offenses to which they pleaded guilty and were sentenced.  Evoulou was subsequently identified, indicted, and arrested in March 2015.

IRS Criminal Investigation investigated the case.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Christopher Stokes and Camille Sparks prosecuted.

Original PressReleases…

Financial Fraud: Alfonso Apu Guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Mail Fraud And Scheme to Defraud Insurance

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Scheme to Defraud Insurance Companies
Scheme to Defraud Insurance Companies

Modesto Man Pleads Guilty to Staging Car Accidents in a Scheme to Defraud Insurance Companies

FRESNO, Calif. — Alfonso Apu, 48, of Modesto, pleaded guilty today to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and admitted that he staged car accidents in a scheme to defraud insurance companies, Acting U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

According to court documents, from at least October 2011 until August 2014, Apu conspired with at least six other individuals to stage dozens of car accidents and submit false claims to insurance companies seeking compensation. Apu and other defendants staged accidents with two or three vehicles that caused $5,000 to $10,000 in damage to each vehicle. After the staged collision, the defendants submitted a cover story to an insurer that concealed the true cause of the accident. The cover story used aliases, false identities, and false addresses for the defendants. The defendants used many different vehicles in the staged collisions by using false identities to register the vehicles and obtain insurance policies. They also recruited other individuals to allow their cars to be used in a staged accident and to make false claims under their insurance policies.

According to the plea agreement, as part of the scheme, the defendants offered to repair the recruited individual’s vehicle at automobile repair shops that they had access to or that were owned by co-defendants, usually performing cosmetic repair or none at all. It allowed them to repair damaged vehicles for an amount significantly less than the payment from an insurance company. In all, Apu caused at least $115,000 in false insurance claims.

This case is the product of an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the California Department of Insurance, Fraud Division. Assistant United States Attorneys Patrick R. Delahunty and Henry Z. Carbajal III are prosecuting the case.

Apu is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Dale A. Drozd on December 12, 2016. On September 6, 2016, Cristopher Santiago Sanchez-Becerra, 32, of Stockton, pleaded guilty to the scheme and is scheduled to be sentenced on November 28, 2016. Apu and Sanchez-Becerra each face a maximum statutory penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The actual sentences, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.

Charges are pending against co-defendants Juan Ortiz Rivas, 39, of Ceres; Oscar Diaz Landa, 46, of San Jose; Victor Hugo Soriano-Villafan, 26, of Modesto; Liobigildo Vargas, 46, of Turlock; Juan Marquez Cadenas, 30, of Patterson. The charges are only allegations; the defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Original PressReleases…

Telephone Dating Scam: Patrick Giblin Sentenced On Wire Fraud Charges Related to a Similar Scheme to Defraud Women

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Telephone Dating Scam
Telephone Dating Scam

Atlantic County, New Jersey, Man Charged With Using Telephone Dating Services To Defraud Multiple Women Across Several States

CAMDEN, N.J. – An Atlantic County man who was previously sentenced for wire fraud was charged today with using telephone dating services to lure and defraud multiple women after he escaped from a halfway house and later, while being on federal supervised release, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.

Patrick Giblin, 52, formerly of Ventnor, New Jersey, is charged by complaint with one count of wire fraud. He made his initial appearance today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Ann Marie Donio in Camden federal court and was detained.

Giblin was previously sentenced in April 2007 to 115 months in federal prison on wire fraud charges related to a similar scheme to defraud women. Giblin was sentenced again on Oct. 2, 2015 to 24 months in prison for violating the terms of his supervised release. He was taken into custody today following the completion of this sentence at FCI-Fairton.

According to the complaint:

Between December 2012 and Dec. 16, 2014, Giblin contacted telephone dating services in an attempt to lure and defraud women by preying on their hope of developing a relationship. Giblin used a series of false representations to convince women on these services to loan him money based on the false promise that he would pay them back.

Giblin posted advertisements and messages on the telephone dating services wherein he falsely claimed, among other things, that he was moving to a victim’s location, that he owned oceanfront property in Atlantic City, and that he worked in the casino business.

Giblin fraudulently told the victims he needed to borrow money for bills, car repairs, moving expenses, and other phony expenditures. He received money from the women via interstate wire services such as Western Union and Moneygram. The complaint – which only includes a sample of the victims involved in the scheme – discusses eight separate victims in five different states and Canada, who lost a total of over $7,000 to Giblin. The investigation remains ongoing.

During the course of the scheme, Giblin, who was on federal supervised release for previously defrauding over 50 women for over $200,000 in losses, unlawfully fled New Jersey for Colonie, New York, where he continued to receive money until his arrest by the U.S. Marshals on Dec. 16, 2014. Giblin has been in federal custody since that time.

Giblin faces a statutory maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years and a $250,000 fine if convicted.

U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Timothy Gallagher in Newark, with the investigation leading to the charges.  Fishman also thanked the U.S. Marshals Service, under the direction of U.S. Marshal Juan Mattos in Newark, for its assistance in this case.

The charge and allegations against Giblin are merely accusations, and he is considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.

The government is represented by Deputy Attorney in Charge Matthew J. Skahill and Assistant U.S. Attorney Gabriel J. Vidoni of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Camden.

Original PressReleases…

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