Following a fraud investigation, police in Oklahoma City arrested a man and woman, and found a huge cache of stolen material in their car, including checks, licenses, and Social Security numbers. Now, the investigation is ongoing, with searches of other locations.
According to OKC Fox, a warranted search of the pair’s car back in late June turned up over thirty Social Security numbers that belonged to other people, as well as hundreds of fraudulent checks and over 350 stolen credit cards. They also had fake licenses and forged U.S. Treasury checks.
The pair, per the report, “were using the fraudulent documents along the I-40 corridor in Western Oklahoma for several months with several agencies doing their own investigations.”
The two are facing multiple felony charges, including “use/possession of license or ID card, conspiracy to unlawfully manufacture LIC/ID card, and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia.”
The Watonga Republican reported that the man and woman had been arrested “on suspicion of conspiracy, identity theft, possession of counterfeit checks and possession of drug paraphernalia,” while a third man had also been arrested, on suspicion of meth possession and destruction of evidence.
“They were in possession of what we believe to be methamphetamine, as well as several checks and IDs, and the equipment to make IDs,” Blaine County Sheriff Travis Daugherty told the Watonga Republican. “It appears to be very organized, and we have turned it over to the White-Collar Crimes division of the OSBI.”
He added that the checks included forged stimulus checks, as well as some that came from major oil and gas companies.
“They would make the check to this fraudulent name and then they would take the driver’s license, and they would put the picture of them with the fake name so they could cash the check,” Daugherty told the newspaper, “It was hard to distinguish whether it was a real ID or a fake ID. They’ve come so far with printers these days.”
Another report, by KFOR, stated that the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) had obtained additional warrants related to the traffic stop investigation, of an apartment complex.
Daugherty told people in the area to be diligent with their banking information.
“We would like to tell the citizens that, if they have any loose checkbooks laying around with routing numbers – that’s all they need to get, is your routing number, to make you become a victim of this,” Daugherty told the newspaper, “So if you have any checkbooks, don’t leave them around. Don’t leave them in your car. If you leave your car unlocked somewhere, that’s all they need to do is get a hold of that routing number.”
Stephen Silver, a technology writer for the National Interest, is a journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.