Man Admits Role In Identity Theft And Wire Fraud Conspiracy
NEWARK N.J. – A Georgia man today admitted using a fake driver’s license in order to obtain a check issued in response to false statements and representations, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.
Temilade Adekunle, 30, of Lawrenceville, Georgia, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty 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:
Adekunle 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 2) had an account. The caller impersonated Victim 2 and asked to withdraw approximately $85,000 from the account. In response, the entity sent a check through a mail carrier to the account holder’s address.
A member of the conspiracy caused the mail carrier to hold the package containing the check for Victim 2 at one of its branch locations. On Aug. 14, 2017, Adekunle entered the branch and, using a driver’s license with Adekunle’s picture and Victim 2’s name and address, obtained the package containing the check. Sentencing is scheduled for May 30, 2018.
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 served consecutively to any prison sentence ordered for 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.
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 plea. He also thanked the Unified Police Department of Greater Salt Lake, Utah, under the direction of Sheriff Rosie Rivera, 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: Jean Barrett Esq., Montclair, New Jersey