Six Outrageous Cases of Identity Fraud
In our previous articles, we provided information on how identity thieves would attempt to acquire your finances (and livelihood)as well as the appropriate precautions that can be done to stop these actions.
Of the hundreds of thousands of cases of identity theft that have been perpetrated just over the last few years in the US, we will provide a few that will leave you with your mouth open and eyes rolling!
The Case of Wendy Brown
A 33 year old woman named Wendy Brown stole the identity her 15 year old daughter, Jamie by using the information to enroll in Ashwaubenon High School in Wisconsin in order to join the cheerleading team.
All this transpired in 2008 when her daughter had relocated to Nevada to live with her grandmother. In her absence, Brown actually attended classes for a day and tried out for the cheerleading squad.
The school administration was prompted to look into the incident (how or why they couldn’t discern the difference between a cheerleader and a 33-year-old is another story) when she disappeared without a trace. The results of their search were disconcerting to say the least. After their correspondence with the school Jaimi had transferred to, they found out that it was Brown who impersonated her, in a bid to relive her childhood memories.
Brown was diagnosed with bipolar disease, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and two other personality related diseases. She was sent to a psychological facility in the end when it was learned that this was not her first identity exploitation.
Abraham Abdallah was a high school dropout who was employed as a restaurant busboy when he breached sensitive information of famous personalities, including legendary film director Steven Spielberg, Cable News Network (CNN) creator Ted Turner and business magnate Warren Buffet among others.
He achieved all this from a computer in a Brooklyn library. He masqueraded as the aforementioned figures and used their bank account records and brokerage accounts as well. Given that all of the above are renowned billionaires who enjoy a stellar reputation, the potential for risk was considerably high.
Abdallah’s feat was one of the most comprehensive identity theft schemes of the century. In total, he was able to infiltrate the financials of more than 200 people ranked in Forbes’ list of the richest individuals in the United States. However, his scheme came to an abrupt conclusion when he was apprehended by the New York Police Department (NYPD). This was not before he had successfully stolen millions from his victims.
The next case involved another female named Nicole McCabe. The Melbourne based woman was at the center of an uncanny case in 2010 when she was held culpable for an assassination while being six months pregnant!
McCabe was residing in Israel when she overheard the news on the radio that she had allegedly assassinated Hamas Chief Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He was supposedly killed in his hotel room after being smothered by a pillow.
The 27-year-old was not the only one linked to the crime. Two other Israeli citizens were also entangled in the murder case. Mossad, the highly secretive and powerful clandestine agency from Israel were also being blamed. Given the severity of the attack, what with Mahmoud being a high ranking Hamas military commander, McCabe was issued with a new passport in the aftermath of the guerrilla attack. Being touted as a war criminal was an unsettling experience for McCabe and others, which also shows the perils of having your identity stolen.
Another appalling case of identityfraud happened to Brittany Ossenfort. She met a Ttransgender woman named Michelle who eventually became her roommate. During their stay together, Michelle developed an unhealthy obsession with Ossenfort.
She even dyed her hair and got an identical haircut. A year after they began sharing an accommodation, Ossenfort received a phone call from authorities citing prostitution as the reason for her arrest and that she should make the payment of bail.
Understandably, Ossenfort was dumbfounded. It took finger print scans to determine that the person behind bars was actually Michelle. Born Richard Phillips, Michelle has been posing as a woman the entire time.
A former help desk employee was able to sell the credit card information of more than 30,000 customers to a Nigerian identity theft ring for 30 dollars apiece. Phillip Cummings worked at Teledata Communications when he carried out this theft.
Using his company credentials, Cummings resold credit reports, which meant that victims lost more than a hundred million dollars in total. The scheme ran for a few years until the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) caught wind of it.
Posted On April 6, 2018