A former computer technician at the Bank of New York Mellon Corp. was indicted on charges of stealing the identities of more than 150 employees at the bank and using the IDs to steal more than $1.1 million from charities and other organizations.
Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau announced the 149-count indictment against Adeniyi Adeyemi, 27, of Brooklyn, on Wednesday.
Adeyemi allegedly stole the personal information of Bank of New York employees, mainly those in the IT department, while working as a technician in the bank's headquarters in New York and other bank locations in Manhattan. He used the stolen information to open more than 30 bank and brokerage accounts with several financial institutions, which served as dummy accounts for receiving money stolen from the bank accounts of charities and nonprofits, prosecutors said. Adeyemi then allegedly withdrew the stolen money or transferred it to other dummy accounts.
Goodwill Industries was among the charities he allegedly defrauded, stealing $120,000 from the organization. Other victims include Iris Ministries, the Sudanese American Community Development Organization, and the Jacksonville Humane Society.
Prosecutors said Adeyemi also stole more than $128,000 from bank employees by changing the contact information associated with their online banking accounts, taking over the accounts and wiring money out to dummy accounts. All the wire transfers were structured under $10,000 to slip under the threshold financial institutions are required to report.
The crimes occurred over a period of more than seven years, prosecutors said.
Law enforcement officers said they traced suspicious Internet activity back to Adeyemi and a court-authorized search warrant of his apartment turned up dozens of credit reports belonging to bank employees along with other documents with their personal information.
Adeyemi was indicted on one count of first-degree grand larceny, 138 counts of first-degree identity theft, one count of first-degree money laundering, and other charges.