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Press Release

Peruvian National Pleads Guilty to Identity Theft Charge Stemming from Distraction Theft Scheme

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Connecticut

Vanessa Roberts Avery, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that ANGEL EUGENIO BANCES CHAPONAN, 60, a citizen of Peru last residing in Queens, New York, pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Judge Stefan R. Underhill in Bridgeport to aggravated identity theft.

According to court documents and statements made in court, the FBI and local law enforcement agencies in Connecticut and elsewhere have been investigating a series of distraction thefts of wallets from victims at Trader Joe’s grocery stores, TJ Maxx stores, and other retail stores in Connecticut, Rhode Island, Virginia, and elsewhere.  The investigation revealed that Bances Chaponan and others rented vehicles to travel throughout the U.S. in order to steal wallets from unwary victims and then use the victims’ credit and debit cards to purchase electronic devices and other items.

Bances Chaponan was arrested on March 13, 2024, shortly after he used a stolen credit card to purchase a MacBook for approximately $2,850 and an iPad Pro for approximately $1,050.  He has been detained since his arrest.

Judge Underhill scheduled sentencing for September 12, at which time Bances Chaponan faces a mandatory term of imprisonment of two years.

This ongoing investigation is being conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Manchester (Conn.) Police Department, the Fairfax County (Va.) Police Department, the Spartanburg County (S.C.) Sheriff’s Office, and the Spartanburg Police Department.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Anthony E. Kaplan and Nathan J. Guevremont.

Updated June 20, 2024

Elder Justice
Financial Fraud
Identity Theft