Some 32 people, including a Hudson County jail nurse, have been arrested in a multimillion, multi-state identity theft and credit card fraud ring.The Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office first got involved in the investigation in the early fall of 2012, when they received numerous complaints from victims as far away as California claiming that credit cards in their name made fraudulent retail purchases in Hudson County, officials said today.
video and physical surveillance, the detectives were able to identify
several suspects, authorities state. Detectives then linked those
suspects to hundreds of other accounts and millions of dollars in phony
The leaders of the group, authorities say,
purchased the identities of unsuspecting victims from online brokers,
who got the information from computer hackers across the United States.
a process known as “punching,” electronic account information from the
cards’ magnetic strips would be transferred onto counterfeit cards,
which were provided to “strikers” who conducted the purchases at
retailers all over the Eastern Seaboard, authorities say.
of strikers purchased retail gift cards that were then used to purchase
various electronic items, authorities say. Those items were then sold in
bulk to fences in New York and New Jersey, authorities say. The fence
would then sell the items to other people for cash payments.
investigation has identified nearly 1,000 victims across the country and
millions of dollars in phony transactions, authorities say.
say the suspects spent the proceeds on luxury cars, high-end jewelry
and other lavish expenses. Some of the money was additionally sent to
accounts in Nigeria, authorities say.
Acting Hudson County
Prosecutor Guy Gregory commended a long list of agencies that were
involved in the take down, saying, “The operation could not have
succeeded without their assistance.”
Defendants charged with
money laundering, theft by deception, wrongful impersonation and
conspiracy include: Bolaji Ola, 30, of Sayreville; Olamide Otti, 27, of
Queens; Akintunde Adeyemi, 28, of East Orange; David Brown, 27, of
Parlin; Adegbola Adedeji, 31, of Parlin; Oluwaseun Jato, 23, of
Hillside; Oluwasola Diji, 31, of Westbury, NY; Oladapo Araromi, 26, of
Elizabeth; and Bertrand Ahaneku, 25, of South Orange.
charged with theft by deception, wrongful impersonation, and conspiracy
include: Oluwaseun Adekoya, 25, of Sewaren; Henry Abdul, 25, of Union;
Babatunde Oyefeso, 27, Union; Michael Assih, 24, of East Orange; John
Orubo, 32, of Brooklyn; Idris Soyemi, 25, of Brooklyn; Imrahim Akaba,
23, of Piscataway; Vladimir Francois, 27, of Newark; Yves Desir, 29, of
Irvington; Aglaide Alzuphar, 23, of Newark; Kossi Klutse, 25, of Newark;
Evon Morris, 23, of East Orange; Fontessa Foreman, 27, of Newark;
Olutoye Babatunde, 22, of Plainfield; Olukayode Adeosun, 30, of Newark;
Gologo Benshaw, 25, of Newark; Olushola Ayeni, 31, of Brooklyn; Orwells
Oyakhire, 24, of Maplewood.
Oladayo Araromi, 26, of Linden and
Olujimi Williams, 24 of Hillside were charged with conspiracy. Matthew
Sabo, 29, of Sayreville and Vijay Shah, 24, of Springfield, are charged
with fencing, conspiracy, and receiving stolen property.
Araromi, a nurse at Hudson County jail making $79,298, has been
suspended without pay, Hudson County spokesman Jim Kennelly said today.
the 32 arrested, 24 appeared in Central Judicial Processing court this
afternoon. Bail was set for those who appeared by Hudson County Superior
Court Judge Joseph Isabella prior to their court appearance.
More arrests are expected, said Hudson County Assistant Prosecutor Gene Rubino.