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FBI snags 100 people in global identity-theft scheme

October 7, 2009 | 10:20 am

More than 50 people have been indicted in Southern California, Las Vegas and Charlotte, N.C., in connection with a "phishing" scheme to steal bank account information from thousands of victims in the United States, an FBI spokeswoman said.

The federal indictment, which is due to be unsealed today, names 53 indicted suspects as well as 47 unindicted co-conspirators from Egypt, said Laura Eimiller, the FBI spokeswoman.

Among those named in the indictment are suspects from Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange and San Diego counties.

The suspects are accused of posing as legitimate bank representatives and sending e-mails to victims, seeking to "update" their records. After the victims would send their personal information, the suspects allegedly withdrew money from their bank accounts.

Eimiller said Egyptian authorities would be seeking charges against the suspects from that country.

-- Andrew Blankstein

Photo: Keith B. Bolcar, acting assistant director in charge of the FBI in Los Angeles, presides over a multi-agency news conference to announce federal indictments and dozens of arrests in the United States and overseas in connection with a sophisticated identity-theft ring. Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times

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