New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said late Thursday that an ex-JPMorgan Chase (JPM) bank teller has been sentenced to up to six years in a state prison for the theft of $850,000 and identity information from hundreds of clients in the greater New York area over a four-year period.
The former teller, Nadia Figueroa, 24, of the Bronx, pleaded guilty earlier this year to stealing customer data as part of a “brazen identity theft ring,” the attorney general’s office says. The ring fraudulently obtained customer information and then made fake identification cards to withdraw money directly from accounts, according the attorney general’s office.
The ringleader, Tyrone “Reece” Lee, and defendant Anthony “Sug” Davis also admitted guilt and were sentenced to state prison.
The identify theft ring operated between July 2010 and June 2014. The scheme involved clients of Bank of America (BAC), JPMorgan Chase, TD Bank (AMTD) and Wachovia, which is now part of Wells Fargo (WFC).
“After abusing her position as a teller and taking advantage of the trust of bank customers, Nadia Figueroa will now serve serious prison time,” Schneiderman said in a statement. “While businesses and consumers must remain on guard against identity theft, New Yorkers should know that my office is looking out for them and will take action against anyone who steals their personal information.”
Figueroa, who pleaded guilty to a 15-count indictment, including four counts of grand larceny, seven counts of identity theft, three counts of criminal possession of a forged instrument and one count of scheme to defraud, worked for JPMorgan in White Plains. She targeted bank clients with common names and over $50,000 in their accounts.
The prosecution entailed the use of court-authorized wiretaps and search warrants.
In the intercepted telephone calls and text messages, the co-conspirators “spoke in code about customer accounts, which they referred to as ‘joints,’ and to the ‘bands’ of money they would steal,” meaning $1,000 stacks of cash, the attorney general’s office adds. The group also used code names for the banks they targeted, referring to TD Bank as “touchdown” and to JPMorgan Chase as “Yase.”