Thursday, January 19, 2006

Federal Inmate Runs Identity Theft Scam

Prisoner indicted in identity-theft scam

A prisoner who won an abuse case before the Supreme Court a decade ago was indicted yesterday by a federal grand jury in Baltimore in an identity-theft scam.

The indictment alleges Dee Deidre Farmer, also known as Douglas C. Farmer, sent out fake court subpoenas and searched the Internet seeking out personal information on potential victims.

The data was used to impersonate dozens of people and open credit accounts in their names, according to federal prosecutors.

The 40-year-old from Baltimore was charged with five counts of mail fraud and two counts of aggravated identity theft.

More than $50,000 in money and property was obtained through the fraudulent accounts, according to the indictment.

In June 1994, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that Farmer, a transsexual, was entitled to a full trial over her accusations that prison officials failed to protect her from a rape by other prisoners at a federal facility in Indiana. Farmer eventually lost the case.

Yesterday's indictment says that an investigation led by the U.S. Secret Service and the Maryland Transportation Authority.

Police found that Farmer sent fraudulent U.S. District Court subpoenas to the motor vehicle agency in Virginia and a motel in North Carolina last year seeking identity information about dozens of clients.

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