Our North Miami Beach Police Department was commended by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Internal Revenue Service for the bust of an identity theft ringleader, which led to a conviction.
Sgt. Rick Silberman stated, “Extra special thanks to Detectives Catlin, Festa, and Ochoa on this case. It started over two years ago when these three detectives made a traffic stop in our city and saw that the suspect possessed identity theft materials. The Minnesota office of the IRS got involved and contacted the NMBPD. They believed the point of compromise was at law firm here in North Miami Beach. The suspect, Rodney Saintfleur, turned out to be an employee at a law firm and used his position to utilize work databases to obtain and give out social numbers.”
According to a Miami Herald article published yesterday, Saintfleur stole the identities of about 23,000 prison inmates and then used their personal information to file fraudulent tax returns. “Prosecutors estimate the fraud involved at least $11 million.”
Saintfleur obviously thought his brilliance would make him a millionaire. All it did was earn the poor schmuck three hots and a cot for the next thirteen years. I love it when criminals get their just desserts.
This is a HUGE bust for our Police Department, and all the officers involved deserve a standing ovation for outstanding detective work.
“Spreading the Wealth”
U.S. Department of Justice
United States Attorney
Southern District of Florida
99 N.E. 4 Street
Miami, FL 33132
February 22, 2013
Broward Man Sentenced to 159 Months for Stealing
More Than 23,000 Identities in Identity Theft Tax Refund Fraud Scheme
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Kelly Jackson, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI) in Minneapolis, José A. Gonzalez, Special Agent in Charge, IRS-CI, Miami Field Office, Larry Gomer, Chief, North Miami Beach Police Department, and Scott Israel, Sheriff, Broward Sheriff’s Office (BSO), announced that defendant Rodney Saintfleur, 28, was sentenced today to 159 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release. Saintfleur pled guilty on November 27, 2012 to one count of conspiracy to submit fraudulent claims to the government, one count of access device fraud, and one count of aggravated identity theft.
According to the Information, the defendant and co-conspirators agreed on a plan to use stolen personal identifying information of others to file fraudulent tax returns seeking refunds. The defendant obtained documents that listed tens of thousands of names with corresponding dates of birth.
According to the factual proffer and statements made at sentencing, the defendant searched an online proprietary database and fraudulently obtained the Social Security numbers of more than 23,000 people whose names and dates of birth appeared on the documents in 2010 and 2011. The defendant provided these Social Security numbers to co-conspirators for an identity theft tax refund fraud scheme. Co-conspirators then filed fraudulent and unauthorized tax returns seeking refunds using the stolen personal identifying information provided by the defendant.
Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of IRS-CI, the North Miami Beach Police Department, and the Broward Sheriff’s Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael N. Berger.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov