NYC Men Run $2 Million COVID Fraud Scheme
In New York, eight men have been arrested for allegedly scamming $2 million in unemployment compensation and half reportedly posed with the ill-gotten cash on social media.
According to the New York Daily News, on Tuesday (May 18), federal investigators say the men ran a yearlong scheme, applying for unemployment funds in the names of people whose identities they’d stolen.
The suspects have been identified as Bryan Abraham, 18; Carlos Vazquez, 20; Angel Cabrera, 18; Armani Miller, 24; Johan Santos, 19; Gianni Stewart, 19; Andre Ruddock, 25, and Seth Golding, 18. Authorities say they received $600 weekly payments in the names of hundreds of people.
Vazquez, Cabrera, Golding and Stewart posed with some of the loot in photos posted online. Cash netted from the scheme was reportedly directly deposited into their bank accounts, sent as checks to their homes, or issued as debit cards made out to the names of the victims whose identities they nabbed.
Six of the eight men were arrested in a sting on Tuesday. Miller and Santos have not been apprehended as of yesterday afternoon.
After initial appearances in Brooklyn Federal Court, all six were released on $75,000 bond.