N.Y. Theft Ring broken up by Sheriff’s Department

by Long Hwa-shu

Six people from what Lake County Sheriff’s Office labels as an organized criminal enterprise in New York have been arrested on identity theft charges for attempting to make purchases at the Apple store in Deer Park with counterfeit credit cards. The purchases were mostly for I-phones.

The sheriff’s office kept the store under surveillance with increased patrols of the area after it received information that an organized criminal ring from New York was trying to make fraudulent purchases at various Apple stores in the Chicago area.  The offenders, sheriff’s detectives learned, were using stolen identities and stolen credit card numbers throughout the country to make the purchases.

Identity theft is a crime that has been on the rise. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office will aggressively investigate criminals who attempt to steal the identity of others. – Undersheriff Raymond Rose.

The fraudulent scheme began to unfold at the Apple store at 20530 N. Rand Road, Deer Park on July 20 when Nicole E. Cannon, 21, of New York tried to make purchases with  fraudulent identity and counterfeit credit cards, according to the sheriff’s office.

Two days later on July 22, a customer identified as Gisselle Diaz, 41, of New York, tried to make purchases with fraudulent identity, sheriff’s office said.

This was followed on July 24 when four people, all from New York, descended on the store, attempting to make purchases by fraud. The four were identified as Corbett Ortiz, 26, of New York; Quintin Ortiz, 18, of Bronx, N. Y.; Melinda Aquino, 21, of Bronx, N.Y.; and Frank Aulet, 20, of Bronx, N.Y.

Unware to the six suspects, they were under surveillance by sheriff’s investigators while they were making the purchases. Sheriff’s office said investigators recovered more than $10,000 worth of stolen Apple products from the suspects.

Sheriff Mark Curran Jr. said he is “extremely proud of the collaboration and investigation conducted by detectives and deputies” in crushing the fraud.

“Identity theft is a crime that has been on the rise. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office will aggressively investigate criminals who attempt to steal the identity of others,” said Undersheriff Raymond Rose.

The Apple store in Deer Park was apparently targeted because it is in an affluent area.

Ring. Cannon (1)
Nicole Cannon

  Nicole E. Cannon is charged with burglary, possession of a counterfeit credit card, use of a counterfeit credit card, unlawful use of fraudulent identification to commit theft, identity theft and forgery. She is being held in Lake County Jail on a $125,000 bond with a hearing set in Lake County Circuit Court for Aug. 17.

Ring. Diaz
Gisselle Diaz

Gisselle Diaz is charged with retail theft, identity theft and burglary. She is being held in county jail on a $75,000 bond with a court hearing set for July 28.

Corbett Ortiz is charged with burglary, possession of counterfeit credit card, use of a counterfeit credit card, unlawful use of a fraudulent ID to commit theft, identity theft and forgery.

Corbett Ortiz
Corbett Ortiz

Quintin Ortiz is charged with burglary, possession of counterfeit credit card, unlawful use of fraudulent  ID to commit theft,  identity theft and forgery. 

Quintin Ortiz
Quintin Ortiz

Melinda Aquino is charged with burglary, possession of a counterfeit credit card, unlawful use of fraudulent ID to commit theft and identity theft. She is being held on a $150,000 bond.

Melinda Aquino
Melinda Aquino

Frank Aulet is charged with possession of a counterfeit credit card, possession of fraudulent ID to commit theft and identity theft. He is being held on a $250,000 bond with hearing set for July 26.

Frank Aulet
Frank Aulet

 

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