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  2/9/2007

Possible Re-emergence of “Wig Lady” Theft Scheme


Wig Lady
 

Detectives from the Montgomery County Police Fraud Section have been investigating
a case of identity theft through a take-over scheme that presents itself as very similar to the
2006 case commonly referred to as the “Wig Lady” case.

On December 22, 2006, SunTrust Bank investigators notified the Fraud Section that several branches of their bank had been victims of loss due to an identity theft take-over scheme.

The on-going investigation has revealed that a number of female account holders were victims of “pickpockets” in the Washington Metropolitan area. This same identity theft scheme is believed to have been carried out in Richmond and Baltimore as well.

In Montgomery County, on two separate dates, November 9 and 10, 2006, an unknown female posing as one of the true account holders entered three different branches of the victim’s bank and was able to negotiate checks from three pickpocket victims. The suspect was able to obtain over $7,000.

On November 10, 2006, a bank surveillance camera captured the photograph of a white female, possibly between 40 and 50 years old. She wore glasses and had gray hair, which looked very much like a wig.

While detectives have not been able to confirm the identity of this suspect, at this stage of the investigation it is believed that she may associated with a ring of people carrying out the identity theft take-over scheme commonly identified as the Wig Lady scheme.

The 2006 case identified as the Wig Lady case resulted in the arrests and federal charges of bank fraud and aggravated identity theft of Carol Silva, age 54, of Boston, Massachusetts; and federal charges of bank fraud, aggravated identity fraud, credit card fraud and obstruction for Jacqueline Elaine Jones-Belim age 46, of Capitol Heights, Maryland. Both are still being held pending prosecution. These individuals are known to have carried out this scheme in Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and New York.

The believed “ring leader” Charles Belim, age 57, of no fixed address, is still wanted in various jurisdictions on open arrest warrants. He is wanted by Montgomery County Police Fraud Detectives for theft scheme over $500, and conspiracy to commit a theft scheme over $500. It is believed that he may have been responsible for this theft scheme being perpetrated recently in the Richmond, Virginia, area and in Montgomery County.

Anyone who may have information about Charles Belim, the female suspect, or this identity theft scheme is asked to call the Fraud Section at 301-840-2590. Those who wish to remain anonymous should call Crime Solvers at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477). Crime Solvers will pay a cash reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to the arrest and/or indictment of this felony crime. 


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LEHB/BLM:lehb


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Contact: Lucille Baur  240-773-5030 or Eruc Burnett240-773-5030

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Last edited: 1/15/2007