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ORC 1-26-15




ORC male duo busted for hitting Walgreens 10 times in two days for refund fraud in Sarasota, FL  Two men were arrested on Thursday on charges that they went to 10 Walgreens in a two-day period using found receipts and stolen items to get cash for false returns, according to the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office. Deputies received an anonymous tip on Sunday that Evan Fried, 35, and Joseph Hochberg, 23, both of Sarasota, were committing retail fraud throughout the county. The tipster said that Hochberg would go to Fried's residence in the 5300 block of Duncanwood Drive and the two would leave for retail stores at 11 a.m. On Tuesday deputies arrived at Fried's residence and followed the two as they went to a Walgreens at 5800 Bee Ridge Rd. in Sarasota at 1:47 p.m., according to the report. Fried exited the vehicle, entered the store and stole a bag of almonds valued at $6.99, according to surveillance footage. Deputies observed the two go to 10 different Walgreens throughout Sarasota on Tuesday and Wednesday both picking up receipts in parking lots and trash cans discarded by previous customers and repeating the thefts and returns, according to a report. Both were charged with organized fraud. Fried has more than a dozen arrests for multiple theft charges, burglary and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. Hochbery has prior arrests for larceny, dealing in stolen property and resisting a retail merchant.

Retailers Alert: St. Joseph County, IN., Police warning retailers of credit card fraud gang hitting stores  A news release from the St. Joseph County Police Department said the fraud attempt starts when the suspect uses a card that causes the card reader to freeze up or go offline. After the card reader is disabled, the suspect engages the cashier in conversation and calls a number from their cell phone, pretending they are calling their bank to fix the problem. When the suspect hands over the phone, however, instead of talking to a person from the bank they are talking to someone else who is a part of the fraud. In several instances, the department reports that fraud results in substantial loss to the store if the suspects are able to convince a hurried or harassed cashier that the sale is legitimate, and take large amounts of expensive merchandise.

Fairfield police charge trio of N.Y. men in alleged credit card theft ring hitting Target  Police arrested a trio of New York men Thursday after they allegedly tried to use fraudulent gift cards to buy items at a local Target store. Richard Morgan Jr., 22, Kareem Prosper, 21, and Terrance Williams, 21, all of Jamaica, N.Y., attempted to buy a variety of electronics using the cards, which prompted a cashier's suspicion, Fairfield Deputy Police Chief Anthony Manna said. While being processed at police headquarters, several other cards were found in the suspects' shoes, socks and wallets, totaling 29 in all. The arrests mark the second time in less than two weeks that a group has been with attempting to use stolen credit cards at the department store.

15th Member of DC-based Identity Theft Ring Pleads Guilty
Maryland woman pleaded guilty Friday in connection with her involvement in a sophisticated identity theft ring that stole the identities of over 600 individuals in Washington, D.C., and surrounding areas with an estimated loss of well over $1 million. Fifteen members of the fraud ring have been convicted so far as a result of this investigation. According to Elliott, members of the ring used their employment at local businesses and nonprofits-including banks, credit unions, medical and dental centers, employee associations, restaurants and stores-to access and steal personally identifiable information (PII) such as social security numbers, addresses, and dates of birth, as well as debit and credit card information. The conspirators then used this stolen information to manufacture fraudulent driver's licenses and other identifications, as well as fraudulent debit and credit cards. Conspirators used the fake identifications and debit or credit cards to establish lines of credit, purchase merchandise at retail establishments, make unauthorized withdrawals from victims' bank accounts and manufacture and cash counterfeit checks. Elliott specifically admitted that that she stole PII and debit and credit card information at the restaurant at which she worked.

Man indicted in Cobb County Million dollar diamond heist
A Florida man has been charged with racketeering in a million-dollar diamond heist in Cobb County. Osniel Labrada-Guillen was indicted Thursday by a Cobb County Grand Jury. He faces two counts of violating the Georgia RICO Act. The burglary happened between Jan. 13 and Jan. 14, 2010, at Diamonds R Forever on Wade Green Road in Kennesaw. According to the investigation, someone cut holes in the store's roof, disabled the phone and alarm systems, broke into a safe and stole more than $1 million worth of jewelry. Police later found a plastic bin filled with items taken in the burglary. DNA was recovered from a plastic spoon found inside the bin, but did not immediately help police identify a suspect. A similar burglary was committed at a jewelry store in Greenwood, Ind., in 2012. Police collected DNA from a ski mask found at the scene and determined the crime was committed by the same suspect who burglarized Diamonds R Forever. Both cases went unsolved until September 2014, when the DNA was matched to Miami Gardens, Fla., resident Labrada-Guillen.

$20,000 in stolen JC Penney merchandise found at Dorchester, MD man's home
Maryland State Police and agents from the FBI arrested a Dorchester County man after locating $20,000 in merchandise stolen from JC Penney at his home, police said. Police said an investigation revealed that since June 2014, one of JC Penney's contracted drivers had been removing merchandise from the trailers he was hauling. They said "additional investigative measures were put in place to track the thefts." On Friday night, police executed a search and seizure warrant at the home of Robert Francis Palmer, 44, of the 5600 block of Fooks Ave. in Federalsburg, and found stolen items including clothing, shoes, kitchen appliances and a "tag sensor remover" inside. Palmer was arrested and charged with theft and burglary, and court records show he was released after posting $15,000 bail.

Kmart cashier allegedly aids shoplifters in Racine, WI
A woman failed to appear in court to face a felony charge Thursday for an attempt in November to steal about $1,400 of merchandise from Kmart, 5141 Douglas Ave., with the alleged help of an employee. Tiffany M. King, 31, of Racine, was reportedly stopped by a loss prevention employee while she was loading merchandise into a car Nov. 4 alongside Terressa Russell, 37, of Racine, who was charged in November, according to a criminal complaint. The plot also allegedly included DeShawn T. Brooks, 20, of Racine, an employee of the store who failed to scan items during checkout. Brooks was also charged in November, according to court records. Although two of the women were arrested on the scene, King was reportedly allowed to leave because she was cooperative, had no previous criminal record, and had two children in the car. King reported to police for an interview two days later and was arrested afterward.

8 people steal over $2000 worth of jackets from Macy's in DeWitt, NY  Police are looking for eight people who robbed the Macy's at ShoppingTown Mall last week, an official said. Five males and three females stole more than $2,000 worth of Ralph Lauren Polo Jackets around 6:40 p.m. Jan. 14, Sgt. Denis Mower, of the DeWitt Police Department said. When the group was approached by a loss prevention employee, a tall male threatened the person with a knife, Mower said.

ORC female duo using booster bags arrested at Coastland Mall in Naples, FL., hitting Old Navy

Woman arrested stealing $3,600 in razors from Wal-Mart Supercenter in Hoover, AL 

ORC 1-26-15
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