Check fraud and money laundering ring stole $150,000, officials say
A check fraud and money laundering ring that stole more than $150,000 from at least 30 Chase and Citibank accounts was busted up by a joint investigation by city, state and federal authorities.
Thirty-seven people from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Georgia are accused of paying people for access to their bank accounts, and then writing bad checks and withdrawing money, according to an indictment released by the Manhattan District Attorney Tuesday. They were hit with a slew of charges, including money laundering, larceny and identity theft.
The DA’s office says the crimes took place between 2009 and 2010.
Earl Barranco, 25, is accused of being one of the group’s ringleaders. He was arrested in Nov. 2010 for allegedly shooting a man to death at a Manhattan diner.
A Chase spokesman said the bank has reimbursed any customers who were affected. Citibank declined to comment.