USA. / 08.09.2021 20:47:18
According to local authorities, the police arrested three people accused of stealing the identities of seven victims of the landslide of a building on June 24 in Surfside, Florida, where 98 people died.
At a press conference, Miami-Dade County State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle, the detainees posed as victims of the disaster (five deceased and two survivors) to request new credit cards be sent to them.
With those cards, the suspects were engaged in buying items such as luxury shoes and bags in shopping centers and made bank transfers; andn total, they acquired assets valued at at least 45 thousand dollars.
Those arrested were identified as Bettsy Alejandra Cacho Medina; her boyfriend, Rodney Choute; and Kimberley Michelle Johnson “appear to be very skilled identity thieves … professional,” Fernandez Rundle said.
The three detainees face charges of conspiracy to defraud, identity theft and use of forged documents, among others.
The investigation began on July 9, when the sister of one of the victims of the Surfside landslide He discovered that someone was modifying the deceased’s bank details and informed the police.
Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava, who for weeks he was in Surfside day by day following the work of the rescue teams, regretted those frauds.
“What a tragedy that someone tries to exploit this situation“, declared in the same press conference.
What happened in the Surfside, Florida landslide?
The 12-story Champlain Towers South building, se partially collapsed in the early morning of June 24 oceanfront in Surfside, north of Miami Beach.
Except for a teenager rescued hours after the tower collapse, firefighters found no survivors among the rubble of the building and soon focused on finding human remains.
The causes of the catastrophe are still unknown and they are being investigated.