22 charged in NY identity fraud ring

The News Leader

February 23, 2010 10:18:28 AM PST
Authorities announced charges Tuesday against 22 people involved in an alleged identity theft ring. Seven of them, including two New York City-based employees of the Department of Motor Vehicles, allegedly sold more than 200 New York state driver's licenses and other identification documents in stolen identities, netting more than $1 million.

In addition, 15 customers who allegedly obtained DMV documents in stolen identities from the ring were charged in separate complaints.

Law enforcement officers arrested six alleged members of the charged identity fraud ring Tuesday morning, while the seventh member is still being sought.

Officials also arrested two alleged customers of the ring, while 11 additional customers were previously arrested and two others are still being sought.

According to the complaint, the fraud ring obtained New York State driver's licenses, learner's permits and identification cards using stolen identities that belonged to real people. They then sold the documents to, among others, convicted felons, a sex offender, an individual featured on the television show "America's Most Wanted," and an undercover officer who claimed to be on the U.S. Government no-fly list.

The two DMV employees were identified as Robin Jones-Woodson and Glenda Hinton.

The ring's alleged leader was Wilch Dewalt, who authorities say, in exchange for a fee of between $7,000 and $10,000, served as a one-stop shop for fraudulent identification documents, enabling more than 200 people to obtain DMV Documents in stolen identities.

Each customer had only to provide Dewalt with his or her fee and a photograph. Dewalt then allegedly supplied his customers with a complete package of identification documents, including some genuine and some fraudulent, that they then used to obtain a DMV document in a stolen identity.

The package of documents usually included a birth certificate, Social Security card, employee identification card, pay stub, W-2 and bank card. Authorities say Dewalt also provided a bogus certification purporting to show that his customers had completed a driving school course, and even offered a completed written learner's permit examination so that the customer did not actually have to take the test.


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