They needed information, and found it unlocked.
This local Colorado gang stole mail out of mailboxes. They were looking for mail that had personal information, such as names, dates of birth, drivers’ license numbers and Social Security numbers. They’d use that info to forge checks to themselves, deposit the checks in a bank, and then withdraw the money so they had cash to spend.
Maybe they thought this was too slow, so they tried what authorities said was a more innovative method. They began opening accounts at stores, especially jewelry stores, where they’d buy expensive jewelry and then pawn the jewelry to get cash.
In a little less than a year, this gang stole over $100,000. Since there were five people in the gang, if they divided the loot equally, that’s only $20,000 per person per year.
They scammed 19 individuals and 36 businesses.
They also fed a methamphetamine habit.
All five members of the gang were eventually caught. The head of the gang was a woman named Teresa Porter, who was charged with 82 criminal counts. Others were sentenced to terms ranging from 8 years to probation.
Teresa Porter pleaded guilty to all 82 counts. And what did she get for her crime of leading a gang that stole $100,000?
20 years in prison.
– Teresa Porter’s gang of identity thieves had secret formula: Jewelry shops + Pawn shops = $, Westword>>
– Re: Final ID Theft Ring Member goes to Prison, Jefferson County District Attorney>>
– Re: ID Theft Ring Indicted on 87 Counts, Jefferson County District Attorney>>