TRENTON, N.J. – A New York man and a Middlesex County, New Jersey, man were sentenced to today to federal prison terms for their respective roles in one of the largest credit card fraud schemes ever charged by the Justice, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.
Qaiser Khan, 53, of Valley Stream, New York, previously pleaded guilty to an information charging him with one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud. He was sentenced today to six months in prison. Sat Verma, 65, of Iselin, New Jersey, previously pleaded guilty to an information charging him with one count of access device fraud. He was sentenced to one year in prison. U.S. District Judge Anne E. Thompson imposed both sentences today in Trenton federal court.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
Khan and Verma were originally charged in February 2013 as part of a conspiracy to fabricate more than 7,000 false identities to obtain tens of thousands of credit cards. They are the last of 22 defendants to be sentenced in this scheme.
The scheme involved a three-step process in which the defendants would make up a false identity by creating fraudulent identification documents and a phony credit profile with the major credit bureaus; pump up the credit of the false identity by providing bogus information about that identity’s creditworthiness; then borrow or spend as much as they could without repaying the debts. The scheme caused more than $200 million in confirmed losses to businesses and financial institutions.
The scope of the criminal fraud enterprise required the conspirators to construct an elaborate network of false identities. Across the country, the conspirators maintained more than 1,800 “drop addresses,” including houses, apartments and post office boxes, which they used as the mailing addresses for the false identities.
Khan admitted he helped obtain credit cards in the name of third parties – many of which were fictional – then directed the credit cards to be mailed to addresses controlled by members of the conspiracy. He also admitted they knew the cards would be used fraudulently at businesses. Verma admitted he effected transactions with access devices issued to another person.
In addition to the prison terms, Judge Thompson sentenced Qaiser to five years of supervised release and fined him $10,000. Verma was sentenced to three years of supervised release, ordered to forfeit $270,000 and fined $1,000.
U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the FBI’s Cyber Division, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Timothy Gallagher in Newark, with the investigation. He also thanked postal inspectors with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, under the direction of Acting Inspector in Charge Ruth M. Mendonca, Newark Division, special agents of the U.S. Secret Service, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Mark McKevitt, and the U.S. Social Security Administration for their assistance.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Zach Intrater and Daniel Shapiro of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Economic Crimes Unit, as well as Assistant U.S.
Attorney Sarah Devlin of the Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Unit.
This case was brought in coordination with the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force, which was established to wage an aggressive, coordinated and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. Attorneys’ offices and state and local partners, it’s the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud. Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions and other organizations. Over the past three fiscal years, the Justice Department has filed nearly 10,000 financial fraud cases against nearly 15,000 defendants including more than 2,900 mortgage fraud defendants. For more information on the task force, please visit www.stopfraud.gov.
Khan: Christopher Adams Esq., Roseland, New Jersey
Verma: Jerard A. Gonzalez Esq., Hackensack, New Jersey