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ORC 6-5-15




"Operation Red Flag" 4-County Check Fraud Ring dismantled in Florida  Following a massive, multi-agency investigation spanning a four-county region, it's now game over for 20 people who are accused of running an expansive check fraud ring. Several of the defendants are facing federal charges for their part in an organized criminal enterprise responsible for more than $30,000 in losses from fraudulent bank transactions. The Volusia County Sheriff's Office along with the U.S. Postal Inspector's Service coordinated the investigation, which spread out to law enforcement agencies in Volusia, Flagler, Seminole and St. Johns counties. Launched last August, the investigation was dubbed "Operation Red Flag". It was a fairly structured operation, according to investigators who spent months toppling the group. "The organization developed a refined method of operation, from the selective targeting of certain neighborhoods or areas, to the method of forgery and culminating in the techniques used to utter the forged checks," Sheriff's investigators wrote in a nearly 100-page affidavit outlining the group's crimes. The organization has been linked to more than 70 cases in the four-county area. The Volusia County Sheriff's Office alone has investigated nearly 30 of the cases. In Volusia County, frauds also were committed in DeLand, Orange City, Daytona Beach, Edgewater, Holly Hill, Ormond Beach, Port Orange and South Daytona. The stolen checks were intended for a wide range of recipients, everything from banks, department stores, credit card, insurance and vehicle finance companies to utility firms and cable providers. The 20 defendants linked to the criminal organization include 15 men and 5 women. Their ages range from 27-47. In addition to confessions from several defendants, investigators have mountains of physical evidence linking the organization to a trail of crimes, including personal identification, thumbprints, recovered checks and surveillance video from many of the bank transactions.

Feds In Sacramento Bust Alleged Fraud And Identity Theft Ring  Seven Sacramento residents were busted by federal authorities in an alleged massive mail fraud and identity theft scheme. Investigators say there are more than 2,000 local victims. One victim was hit twice. Part of the alleged scheme involved stolen target REDcard numbers. Prosecutors say the suspects would sometimes spend more than $1,000 at a time at local targets with ripped-off numbers. They allegedly used stolen mail to steal identities and make trouble for thousands of people. Federal prosecutors say the ID theft ring had a long list: a spreadsheet of REDcard numbers. They allegedly used equipment to put stolen numbers on blank credit cards and bought expensive electronics at Target stores.

Baton Rouge, LA Stolen car report unravels retail theft scheme  For two years, according to the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office, April Parker and Kevin T. Warren staked out parking lots of big box stores across the parish, waiting for their golden tickets to drop from the hands of unassuming customers. The duo, arrested Wednesday, are accused of scooping up receipts over the past two years. Tickets in hand, the two allegedly walked into a number of stores, stole various items off the shelves listed on the receipts and later returned the stolen items, using the receipts as proof of purchase and bagging the proceeds, the Sheriff's Office said Thursday. Parker ran inside the Toys R Us on Tuesday, when she came out she believed her car was stolen and contacted Police. When Police recovered the car, inside were dozens of receipts - with dates from 2013 to this year - and more than 20 gift cards. Deputies also found diaries detailing the thefts and subsequent transactions.

Two arrested in theft of 150 guns from Arms R Us in Elko, NV
Two men suspected of stealing about 150 guns from a store were arrested Wednesday morning. The Elko County Sheriff's Office received a report at about 7 a.m. that Arms-R-Us, a gun store located in Deeth, was burglarized, Undersheriff Clair Morris said. Morris said the stolen weapons included rifles, handguns, shotguns and Glocks. He estimated the value of the guns to be more than $100,000.

Stamford, CT Woman Targeted Target In Shoplifting Spree
A Stamford shopper brazenly placed hundreds of dollars in clothes and hair supplies into two bags and tried to walk out of Target without paying Wednesday afternoon, police said. Charged with fourth-degree larceny is Diana Holliman, 54, of 141 Franklin St. The items were valued at $1,698, and that was the amount her bond was set at, police said.


ORC 6-5-15
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