A multi-agency, multi-state FBI investigation into larcenies from vehicles and identity thefts targeting women along the East Coast led to the arrests of nearly a dozen co-conspirators involved in the elaborate operation.
Nine men have been charged in a 13-count indictment for their roles in the “Felony Lane Gang” scheme that included wide-ranging bank fraud and identity theft schemes that affected hundreds of victims.
Prosecutors allege that the nine suspects were involved together in a fraud scheme known as “Felony Lane Gang.”
Investigators from the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, Ulster County District Attorney’s Office, Darien, Greenwich, and Auburn, Massachusetts police departments were all involved in the bust along with agencies across the country.
The scheme involved members of the conspiracy using stolen identification from one victim to conduct fraudulent transactions using checks and credit cards stolen from another victim.
The mobile identity theft ring traveled across the country breaking into cars, often targeting those parked by women at locations such as health and fitness centers, daycares, outdoor recreational parks, and dog parks, officials said.
After committing these “smash-and-grab” vehicle thefts, members of the conspiracy allegedly stole debit cards, credit cards, checkbooks, and photo identifications, which they later used to commit bank fraud, sometimes even years later.
It is alleged that the leaders of the scheme recruited women, whom they often referred to as “faces,” to impersonate the smash-and-grab victims in drive-through bank lanes. The recruited check cashers were almost always suffering from an addiction to a controlled substance and were provided payment at least partially in narcotics.
In total, the group was allegedly involved in more than 700 smash-and-grab thefts and 1,000 fraudulent bank transactions in New York and across the country.
The losses from their victims exceeds $1.5 million.
Those arrested in the bust:
- Tyrone Parker, Jr. AKA “Cheese,” or “Little Thigh,” 21, of Fort Lauderdale, Florida;
- Joshua Mallory AKA “Pudge,” 35, of Fort Lauderdale;
- Tyrone Parker AKA “Tyron Parker,” or “Thigh,” 39, of Fort Lauderdale;
- Randall Taylor AKA “Gucci,” or “Guwop,” 34, of Fort Lauderdale;
- Cedric Lynch AKA “City,” or “C,” 35, of Orlando, Florida;
- Terrell McDonald AKA “Ruger,” or “Moon,” 30, of Troy;
- Keyshawn Arnold AKA “Key,” 23, of Schenectady;
- Robert Watson AKA “Big Bob,” 34, of Fort Lauderdale;
- Gary Grier AKA “G,” 34, of Fort Lauderdale.
Each has been charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. If convicted, each suspect faces up to 30 years in prison.
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