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NRI charged ID theft and bank fraud in New Jersey


TRENTON, NYC, Aug 02, 2007
Soshil Bhatia

NRI Nazeem Patel, 38, aka Nazeem Van Steen, Sandra Place was indicted on 19 counts of bank fraud by federal grand jury. Patel, of Sandra Place in Brick, was a Sovereign Bank employee from Feb. 5 to March 8, when he was fired from his position at the Burnt Tavern Road branch, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Patel had access to customers' account data and confidential information such as Social Security numbers, current addresses, account numbers, dates of birth, phone numbers, mothers' maiden names and e-mail addresses, the indictment states.

Patel repeatedly accessed three bank accounts between Feb. 22 and April 6, and requested online checks totaling more than $228,000 payable either to himself or to various high-end jewelers. He diverted funds from three customer accounts - $51,800 from "K.D.," $110,400 from "M.S." and $46,199 from customer "T.H.," according to the indictment. The indictment further charges that Patel used the stolen funds to purchase jewelry and other items through e-mail or through the eBay Web site.

A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney, said Sovereign Bank reported the suspicious activity to investigators, and that Patel was arrested on April 17. He was later released on a $250,000 bond.

Maximum penalty of Frauds:

  • The count of identity theft carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000.
  • The count of aggravated identify theft carries a maximum penalty of two years in prison to be served consecutively to any other sentence imposed and a fine of $250,000.
  • Each count of bank fraud carries a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and a fine of $1 million