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Cyrus R. Vance, Jr.

District Attorney, New York County

For Immediate Release
May 09, 2017

DA VANCE: SIX INDIVIDUALS INDICTED FOR LARCENY SCHEME THAT NETTED $150,000 IN LUXURY COSMETICS FROM MACY’S

Defendants Spent Thousands of Dollars on Cosmetics Using Forged Credit Cards

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the indictment of six individuals for their participation in an identity theft and larceny scheme involving primarily the purchase of luxury cosmetic products valued at more than $150,000 from a major department store. The defendants are charged in a New York State Supreme Court indictment with Grand Larceny in the Second and Third Degrees, Identity Theft in the First Degree, Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Second Degree, and Criminal Possession of Stolen Property in the Fourth Degree.[1]  

“Identity theft is the foundation of this alleged scheme to steal high-end cosmetics,” said District Attorney Vance. “For several weeks, the six individuals charged in the indictment were able to conceal the voluminous thefts they committed, all the while ringing up $150,000 in purchases from a single department store. We hope that by highlighting this shadowy scheme, we are able to deter others from engaging in similar retail and identity theft fraud.” 

According to the indictment and documents filed in court, in December 2015, CHENG FENG LI, 22, JING JING LI, 28, YONG MEI LIN, 22, YU HAI HE, 29, YU LAN DONG, 28, and BOHAN LI, 32, participated in a credit card and larceny scheme that involved more than 250 fraudulent transactions conducted at the Macy’s flagship store in Herald Square. Using credit card information stolen from more than a dozen JP Morgan, Chase Bank, and Capital One Bank customers, the defendants went on a series of organized shopping trips during which they purchased various luxury cosmetics valued at thousands of dollars, including products by La Mer, Clinique, Lancôme, Kiehl’s, and others. One defendant, LIN, made more than 20 purchases in one day, and during the period charged, engaged in a total of more than 150 separate transactions involving luxury items valued at more than $100,000.

This is the second indictment filed within the past year related to retail fraud and credit card schemes.

As charged in a separate indictment related to the investigation, in December 2016, NING WEI-CHEN, 28, was charged with Grand Larceny in the Third and Fourth Degrees, Criminal Possession of Stolen Property in the Fourth Degree, and other charges for using stolen credit card information to purchase a printer and designer jewelry. A search warrant later executed at NING WEI-CHEN’s residence in Queens revealed possession of a forged credit card, stolen credit card, and more than 250 stolen credit card numbers stored on digital devices. Pursuant to the execution of the search warrant, the defendant was separately arrested and charged in Queens County with possession of the items.

As charged in another separate indictment related to the investigation, in April 2017, HSINGCHENG HSI, 27, was charged with Identity Theft in the Second Degree, Criminal Possession of Stolen Property in the Fourth Degree, and Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree, among other charges, for using stolen credit card information to purchase hospitality deals on Groupon, which the defendant used to stay at multiple hotels in Manhattan. A search warrant later executed at HSI’s residence revealed possession of two credit card encoding devices, embosser, skimming devices, multiple forged and partially forged credit cards, fake identification cards, blank plastic media used to forge credit cards or identification cards, dozens of stolen credit cards, and more than $20,000 in cash. Investigators also discovered different identification card templates, including those for driver’s licenses issued in New York, as well as holograms that could be used to manufacture forged licenses. Pursuant to the execution of the search warrant, HSI—in addition to defendants JING JING LI and CHEN FENG LI—were separately arrested and charged in Queens County with possession of the items.

Assistant District Attorney Daniel Haier is handling the prosecution of the case under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Jeremy Glickman, Deputy Chief of the Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau, Assistant District Attorney Brenda Fischer, Chief of the Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau, and Executive Assistant District Attorney Michael Sachs, Chief of the Investigation Division. Cybercrime Analyst Lilianna Rembar provided additional assistance with the investigation. 

District Attorney Vance thanked the following agencies and individuals for their assistance with the investigation: the NYPD Cyber Task Force within the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office’s, and in particular, Detective Robert Turbiak; the NYPD Manhattan South Grand Larceny Burglary Larceny Apprehension Surveillance Team (BLAST), and in particular, Sgt. Gerard Caffrey; Macy’s, and in particular, the Loss Prevention Unit; Bulgari; JP Morgan Chase Bank; Manhattan District Attorney’s Office Investigators William Burmeister and Yohanna Pena, and the Queens County District Attorney’s Office, and in particular, Deputy Bureau Chief Christina Hanophy and Assistant District Attorney Jaclyn Belson.

[1] The charges contained in the indictments are merely allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. All factual recitations are derived from documents filed in court and statements made on the record in court.

Defendant Information:

YU LAN DONG. D.O.B. 9/7/1988
China

Charged:

  • Grand Larceny in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Identity Theft in the First Degree, a class D felony, 2 counts
  • Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Second Degree, a class D felony, 4 counts
  • Identity Theft in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 2 counts
  • Grand Larceny in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Fourth Degree, a class D felony, 4 counts
  • Petit Larceny, a class A misdemeanor, 2 counts

YU HAI HE, D.O.B. 7/24/1987
China

Charged:

  • Grand Larceny in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Identity Theft in the First Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Second Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, 1 count

BOHAN LI, D.O.B. 7/21/1984
China

Charged:

  • Grand Larceny in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Identity Theft in the First Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Second Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, 1 count

CHENG FENG LI, D.O.B. 12/5/1994
China

Charged:

  • Grand Larceny in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Identity Theft in the First Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Identity Theft in the Third Degree, a class A misdemeanor, 2 counts
  • Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Second Degree, a class D felony, 5 counts
  • Criminal Possession of Stolen Property in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, 6 counts
  • Petit Larceny, a class A misdemeanor, 1 count

JING JING LI, D.O.B. 2/6/1989
China

Charged:

  • Grand Larceny in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Second Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Identity Theft in the First Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
  • Criminal Possession of Stolen Property in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, 1 count

YONG MEI LIN, D.O.B. 8/1/1994
China

Charged:

  • Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a class C felony, 1 count
  • Identity Theft in the First Degree, a class D felony, 2 counts
  • Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Second Degree, a class D felony, 3 counts
  • Grand Larceny in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 3 counts
  • Criminal Possession of Stolen Property in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony, 1 count

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