Essex County Man Sentenced to 82 Months in Prison for Using Credit Cards Stolen from U.S. Mail to Defraud Banks and Commit Identity Theft
NEWARK N.J. – A Georgia man today admitted using fake driver’s licenses in order to obtain checks issued in response to false statements and representations, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.
Abdulrasheed Yusuf, 29, of Lilburn, Georgia, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Katharine S. Hayden in Newark federal court to an information charging him with one count of aggravated identity theft and one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
Yusuf was a member of a conspiracy to fraudulently obtain money, including by committing identity theft, impersonating account holders and obtaining money from their accounts. On Aug. 8, 2017, a member of the conspiracy contacted an entity where an individual (Victim 1) had an account. The caller impersonated Victim 1 and stated that he/she wanted to withdraw $34,636 from his/her account. The entity sent a check through a mail carrier to the account holder at his/her address.
A member of the conspiracy caused the mail carrier to hold the packages containing the check for Victim 1 at one of its branch locations. On Aug. 14, 2017, Yusuf entered the branch and, using a driver’s license with Yusuf’s picture and Victim 1’s name and address, obtained a package he believed contained the check to Victim 1. Yusuf used a separate fake driver’s license in connection with obtaining a different check similarly issued in response to fraudulent statements.
The conspiracy to commit wire fraud charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, and a fine of $250,000, or twice the gross gain to the defendant or twice the gross loss to others, whichever is greater. The aggravated identity theft charge carries a sentence of two years in prison, which must be consecutive to any imprisonment ordered concerning the conspiracy to commit wire fraud charge, and a fine of $250,000, or twice the gross gain to the defendant or twice the gross loss to others, whichever is greater. Sentencing is scheduled for May 10, 2018.
U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Timothy Gallagher in Newark, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Michael C. Mikulka in New York, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty pleas. He also thanked the Salt Lake City, Utah, Police Department for its role in the investigation.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Kogan of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Economic Crimes Unit in Newark.
Defense counsel: David B. Glazer Esq., Livingston New Jersey