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Brothers sentenced for multiple-state ID theft ring
NEWARK, N.J. (7/11/11)--Two Brooklyn, N.Y., brothers each received sentences of 30 months in prison stemming from their participation in an identity theft ring that operated in six states and stole information to access home equity lines of credits (HELOCs) from bank customers and credit union members. Adewale Adenuga, 28, and Fuad Adenuga, 26, each had pleaded guilty last fall in a U.S. District Court in Newark, N.J., to one count of conspiracy to commit identity theft and wire fraud, said a press release from the U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey (Targeted News Service (July 7). The multi-state identity theft ring operated in, among other places, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Georgia, and Florida. The Adenuga brothers gained access account and other information used by members and customers of credit unions, banks, and credit card issuers, including Citibank, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Washington Mutual, and TD Bank, according to court documents cited in the release. They stole account holder names, addresses, account numbers, Social Security numbers, and account balance information, which they used to perpetrate several fraudulent schemes related to HELOC accounts, credit card fraud, and withdraw thousands of dollars from accounts at credit unions and banks. The brothers and co-conspirators also traded the information over e-mail, impersonated account holders on the phone and in person, changed customer address information in bank files, transferred money from existing accounts to new accounts in the names of the identity theft victims, and withdrew funds from the new accounts by using debit cards at ATMs and money orders for cash. In addition to the 30 months in prison, the Adenuga brothers were sentenced to three years of supervised release and ordered to pay more than $177,217 in restitution. They also could face additional civil penalties. Co-defendant Ibrahim Yusuff also pleaded guilty to the same charge. He is scheduled to be sentenced July 21.
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