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					                                OFFICE OF THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY
                                       RICHMOND COUNTY

                                              DANIEL M. DONOVAN, JR.
                                                   DISTRICT ATTORNEY

                                               130 STUYVESANT PLACE
                                           STATEN ISLAND, NEW YORK 10301
                                              TELEPHONE (718) 876-6300




PRESS RELEASE
For Immediate Release on June 16, 2010                                    Contact: William J. Smith (718) 556-7150
                                                                                   William.Smith@rcda.nyc.gov
                                                                                   HU                             U




D.A. DONOVAN & COMMISSIONER KELLY ANNOUNCE INDICTMENT
        IN MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR ID THEFT SCHEME,
            FORT HOOD SOLDIERS AMONG VICTIMS
         ***Scam Claims 60 Victims, Including 20 Military, Some Deployed in Iraq, Afghanistan***

STATEN ISLAND, NY - Richmond County District Attorney Daniel M. Donovan, Jr. and NYPD Commissioner
Raymond W. Kelly today announced the indictment of 18 individuals as part of a multi-million dollar identity theft scam
which victimized 27 banks and 60 individual victims, including 20 members of the military stationed at Fort Hood, some
deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan. Among the defendants, 15 were arrested and arraigned Tuesday or are pending
arraignment Wednesday in State Supreme Court as part of a 66-count indictment. As part of the investigation, an
additional 15 individuals have been indicted on lesser charges.

District Attorney Donovan stated, “These arrests are the culmination of an investigation which began in March 2008,
following reports of fraudulent checks being laundered through Staten Island banks. That investigation, through the use of
wiretaps and search warrants uncovered a nationwide confederacy of scam artists who engaged in wide-spread identity
theft which yielded proceeds of at least a million dollars a year, and well over $2 million during the course of the
investigation. While identity theft is enough of a violation of someone’s privacy, these individuals also targeted members
of our military at Fort Hood in Texas, some bound for Iraq and Afghanistan, at the time of last November’s tragic
shootings and its immediate aftermath.”

Police Commissioner Kelly stated, “This case started with a woman from Montana calling One Police Plaza to report that
someone on Staten Island was stealing money from her checking account. That one call, transferred to the NYPD’s
special frauds squad, led to the arrest yesterday of a ring that stole millions from unsuspecting victims from Staten Island
to Fort Hood, Texas, making victims of soldiers serving their country. With insiders stealing valuable data, the ring stole
identifies to establish checking accounts, credit and debit cards and lines of home equity credit. The detectives and
prosecutors can take great pride in putting these despicable con-artists out of business.”

According to District Attorney Donovan, banks located on Staten Island reported significant losses with the deposit of
fraudulent checks from Home Equity Line of Credit accounts. This led to an investigation into the activities of two leaders
of the network, Kazeem Badru and Ganiu Rilwan. Subsequent investigation, including the use of 10 eavesdropping and 7
search warrants, uncovered additional criminal operations centered in Staten Island and extending into lower New York

                                                           -end-
and Westchester, the cities of Philadelphia (PA), Atlanta (GA), Greensboro (NC), the Texas town of Brenham and Fort
Hood Army post and overseas to the city of Lagos, Nigeria.

The District Attorney explained that the defendants were able to arrange for the members of their criminal enterprise to
gain access to active checking, investment and credit card accounts. The group operated under a loose organizational
structure, nicknamed “BRO” for the last names of the principals, Kazeem Badru, Ganiu Rilwan and Okechukwu
Okoronkwo, who through the use of underlings, recruiters and their “dupes” were able to create a network of individuals
to: launder stolen or forged checks act as a mail drop for stolen or compromised accounts, or utilize stolen or
compromised credit card accounts for a fee. The participants in the organization would receive a percentage of the stolen
currency, a portion of merchandise acquired with stolen cash/credit, or a portion of the proceeds of the sale of that
merchandise.

According to District Attorney Donovan, as part of the organization’s operations, the defendants allegedly compromised
or attempted to compromise the accounts of 20 service members based in Fort Hood, some of whom were deployed in
Iraq and Afghanistan, at the time and in the immediate aftermath of last year’s shootings at the U.S. Army facility. While
losses to military personnel was limited through law enforcement’s proactive efforts to approximately $15,000 during the
course of the investigation the defendants are alleged to have made 2,515 separate attempts to either obtain information,
change addresses, transfer money or obtain credit cards and checkbooks from service members’ accounts.

Of the 18 defendants arraigned yesterday, 16 face a top count of Enterprise Corruption, a Class B felony, punishable by up
to 25 years in prison. The remaining two defendants are charged with Grand Larceny in the 3rd and 4th degrees
respectively, carrying top sentences of up to 7 and 4 years in prison.

The case against these defendants is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney David Frey, Deputy Chief of the
Investigations Bureau, under the supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney Timothy J. Koller. The District
Attorney commended the work of Detective Robert Fitzgibbons of the NYPD Special Investigation Division, Financial
Crimes Task Force, Special Frauds Squad, who was the lead detective in the investigation. The investigation was assisted
by the U.S. Postal Inspection Services, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement of the Department of Homeland
Security, Philadelphia Police Department Major Case Squad, U.S. Army’s Fort Hood Criminal Investigation Division,
Brenham County District Attorney’s Office (Texas) and USAA Bank Investigator Damon Young.

The public is reminded than an indictment is merely an accusation, and that a defendant is innocent until proven guilty in
a court of law.

                                                          -end-



                                List of Indicted Defendants
Kazeem Badru
220 Osgood Avenue
Staten Island, NY 10304
DOB: 3/16/1972
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL 460.20)
Additional Charges: Two Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 4th Degree (PL 110/155.30), Att. Falsifying Business
Records- 1st Degree (PL110/175.10), Three Counts of Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL155.35), Criminal
Possession of a Forged Instrument- 2nd Degree (PL170.25), Three Counts of Grand Larceny- 2nd Degree
(PL155.40), Money Laundering- 2nd Degree (PL470.15)
Ganiu Rilwan
240 Park Hill Avenue
Staten Island, NY10304
DOB: 5/22/1964
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Two Counts of Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument- 2nd Degree (PL170.25),
Criminal Possession of Stolen Property- 4th Degree (PL165.45), Three Counts of Grand Larceny- 4th Degree
(PL155.30), Four Counts of Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (155.35), Three Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 4th
Degree (PL110/155.30), Att. Falsifying Business Records- 1st Degree (PL110/175.10), Three Counts of Grand
Larceny- 2nd Degree (PL155.40), Money Laundering- 2nd Degree (PL470.15)

Okoronkwo Okechukwu a/k/a Ikeena a/k/a Obinna Okoronkwo a/k/a “OT” a/k/a “O-Town”
30 Parkview Loop
Staten Island, NY10314
DOB: 1/16/1978
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Six Counts of Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL155.35), Nine Counts of Grand Larceny- 4th
Degree (PL155.30), Six Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 4th Degree (PL110/155.30), Three Counts of
Conspiracy- 5th Degree (PL105.05), Scheme to Defraud- 1st Degree (PL190.65), Criminal Possession of a
Forged Instrument- 2nd Degree (PL170.25), Three Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL110/155.35),
Three Counts of Criminal Possession of Stolen Property- 4th Degree (PL165.45), Two Counts of Identity Theft-
1st Degree (PL190.80), Identity Theft- 2nd Degree (PL190.79)

Chukunenye Okpo a/k/a “Chuck”
59 Dehart Avenue
Staten Island, NY10303
DOB: 7/8/1983
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Three Counts of Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL155.35), Five Counts of Grand Larceny-
4th Degree (PL155.30), Two Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 4th Degree (PL110/155.30), Three Counts of
Conspiracy- 5th Degree (PL105.05), Scheme to Defraud- 1st Degree (PL190.65), Three Counts of Att. Grand
Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL110/155.35), Two Counts of Identity Theft- 1st Degree (PL190.80), Identity Theft- 2nd
Degree (PL190.79)


George Brew a/k/a “OLA”
8759 Glenloch Street
Philadelphia, PA19136
DOB: 8/9/1978
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL 460.20)
Additional Charges: Conspiracy- 5th Degree (PL 105.05), Grand Larceny-3rd Degree (PL 155.35), Grand
Larceny-4th Degree (PL 155.30)

Samuel Montgomery a/k/a “ADE”
2525 Welsh Road
Philadelphia, PA19114
DOB: 3/27/1981
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Conspiracy- 5th Degree (PL105.05), Two Counts of Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree
(PL155.35), Two Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 4th Degree (PL110/155.30), Three Counts of Grand Larceny-
4th Degree (PL155.30), Criminal Possession of Stolen Property- 4th Degree (PL165.45)
Ishameel Lawandi a/k/a “ISH”
240 Parkhill Avenue
Staten Island, NY10304
DOB: 1/23/1981
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Five Counts of Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument- 2nd Degree (PL170.25), Grand
Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL155.35), Two Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL110/155.35)

Kanayo Unokiwe a/k/a “SAM”
43 Trantor Place
Staten Island, NY10302
DOB: 10/28/1979
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Att. Grand Larceny- 4th Degree (PL110/155.30), Two Counts of Criminal Possession of
Stolen Property- 4th Degree (PL165.45)

Kolawole Adeolike a/k/a “K-Boy”
89 Arlington Avenue
Staten Island, NY 10303
DOB: (NO DATE OF BIRTH)
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Scheme to Defraud- 1st Degree (PL190.65), Two Counts of Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree
(PL155.35)

Corey Mills
280 Parkhill Avenue
Staten Island, NY10304
DOB: 1/14/1989
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument- 2nd Degree, Three Counts of Att. Grand
Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL110/155.35)

John Doe #1
Top Counts: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Scheme to Defraud- 1st Degree (PL190.65), Two Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 4th Degree
(PL110/155.30)

Alexias S. Cartews a/k/a “LEX”
51 E. Park Street
East Orange, NJ07017
DOB: 6/22/1977
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Two Counts of Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL155.35), Conspiracy- 5th Degree (PL105.05)
Kevin Marshall
1410 Parkchester Road
Bronx, NY10462
DOB: 7/24/1981
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Two Counts of Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL155.35), Five Counts of Grand Larceny- 4th
Degree (PL155.30), Two Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 4th Degree (PL110/155.30), Two Counts of
Conspiracy- 5th Degree (PL105.05), Scheme to Defraud- 1st Degree (PL190.65), Two Counts of Identity Theft-
1st Degree, Identity Theft- 2nd Degree

John Doe #2
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL155.35), Three Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree
(PL110/155.35)

Jane Doe #1
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Three Counts of Grand Larceny- 4th Degree (PL155.30), Criminal Possession of Stolen
Property- 4th Degree (PL165.45)

Ayodele Rosiji
100 – 23 198th Street
Hollis, NY11423
DOB: 8/2/1988
Top Count: Enterprise Corruption (PL460.20)
Additional Charges: Three Counts of Att. Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL110/155.35), Conspiracy- 5th Degree
(PL105.05)

Ethel Jones
5515 West Market
Greensboro, NC27409
DOB: 7/17/1984
Top Count: Grand Larceny- 4th Degree (PL 155.30)

Kelechi Ekwegh a/k/a “KC”
272 Maple Parkway
Staten Island, NY10303
DOB: 6/8/1979
Top Count: Grand Larceny- 3rd Degree (PL155.35)

				
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