April 18, 2018 |
The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office last week indicted 10 people accused of stealing more than $500,000 from various banks through a scheme that involved check fraud and mail theft, according to court documents and a press release.
“US mail dates back to 1775 but remains a vehicle for complex frauds like identity theft in 2018,” District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr. said in the Tues., April 10 press release announcing the indictment.
The defendants allegedly orchestrated “an elaborate check fraud scheme that included altering checks stolen at random from the mail,” Vance said.
He added, “What’s more, the defendants knowingly recruited disadvantaged New Yorkers in desperate need of cash at homeless shelters and public assistance offices in order to broaden their scheme.”
From around May 2011 to October 2017, Craig Haffaney, 48, Andre Evans, 54, and James Anderson, 31, paid those they recruited to set up bank accounts and then to hand over their debit cards and personal information, according to the New York State Supreme Court indictment and the release.
The three men, Nyomi Anderson, 37, and Dorrinda Bell, 63, allegedly used the bank accounts to deposit forged checks, and then withdrew money before the banks rejected the checks, according to court papers. The defendants are accused of running this scam at TD Bank, Capital One Bank, Bank of America and Citibank, according to the indictment. Court papers show a separate but related scheme allegedly involving fraudulent wire transfers at USALLIANCE Financial.