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Dozens Indicted in Queens-Based ID Theft Ring

Friday, October 07, 2011

More than 100 people based in Queens have been indicted in an international identify theft probe after authorities said they bilked customers out of $13 million over a 16-month period.

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly and Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said the group, made up of five rings, specialized in counterfeit credit cards, and it's members had links to Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

"This operation reached from Jamaica Bay to the shores of Tripoli and victimized thousands of Americans, including innocent New Yorkers," Kelly said.

Now, 86 are being held by police and 35 more are still unaccounted for.

“This is by far the largest – and certainly among the most sophisticated – identity theft/credit card fraud cases that law enforcement has come across,” said District Attorney Brown in a statement.

The alleged thieves were bank tellers, store employees and restaurant workers who used their positions to skim customer's personal information.

The credit cards were used to rent luxury cars, and stay in high-end hotels. One was used to charter a private jet from New York to Florida, according to the Queens DA.

With the Associated Press

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