Emerick Martin, 42, Brooklyn, New York and his wife, Donna Martin, 42, Brooklyn, New York, were charged with stealing the personal identity of a 41-year old Rosedale, Queens, New York man to fraudulently take out more than $1 million in mortgage loans, obtain multiple credit cards in the victim’s name, and apply for a loan for a $90,000 Mercedes Benz using a forged driver’s license, also in the victim’s name.
Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown said, “Identity theft is a financial plague afflicting millions of victims and costing billions of dollars in losses to consumers, business and financial institutions. In this particular case, the victim – who was a complete stranger to the defendants – had over the years established for himself and his family one of the best credit rating scores a person could possibly achieve. In just a matter of months, it is alleged, the defendants destroyed it, leaving his credit in shambles. It could take the victim months or even years to reestablish his good credit.”
The Martins were each has been charged with attempted grand larceny, criminal possession of a forged instrument, identity theft, falsifying business records, scheme to defraud and unlawful possession of personal identification information. If convicted, each defendant faces up to seven years in prison.
The investigation began earlier this year when the Rosedale, New York homeowner discovered that someone was attempting to obtain a $180,000 second mortgage on his home and made a complaint to the District Attorney’s Economic Crimes Bureau, which conducted an investigation that led to the defendants’ arrest and the filing of criminal charges.
According to the charges, the defendants took out two mortgages, totaling $1,123,000, on a residence located at 266 Pine Acres Boulevard, Dix Hills, Long Island, using the name and social security number of the victim, David Clarke. Thereafter, on December 19, 2006, it is charged, the defendants, posing as David Clarke and Donna Clarke, and
a third unapprehended individual, went to a Westbury, Long Island, mortgage broker and requested a second mortgage of $180,000 on the real Mr. Clarke’s Rosedale, New York property. At the mortgage closing on January 11, 2007, the defendants allegedly presented a forged driver’s license in the name of David Clarke and completed the paperwork by supplying the actual loan number, job information, telephone number and addresses of the real Mr. Clarke.
It is further alleged that the two defendants went to a Jamaica, Queens, auto dealership on December 23, 2006, and asked to purchase a 2007 Mercedes Benz S550 for $90,000 on credit in the name of David Clarke and requested that the vehicle’s title be placed in Donna Martin‘s name. In filling out the loan application, it is alleged that the defendants provided the social security number of the real Mr. Clarke and a forged driver’s license, also in the name of Mr. Clarke. The loan, however, was denied when the defendants could not produce a valid driver’s
It is further alleged that the defendants had secured at least two credit cards – an American Express card and Bank of America card – in the name of David Clarke. In both cases, the defendants allegedly had the monthly statements mailed to the Dix Hill, New York residence which they had purchased using David Clarke‘s name.