Police suspect elaborate scheme targeted people everywhere
SLIDELL – An elaborate cell phone scam may have duped people in the Baton Rouge area, though officials in St. Tammany say while there hasn't been a solid connection yet, a woman's alleged scheme was so involved, there are likely victims in many, many places.
Yarenis De La Cruz, 32, of New York, was arrested in Slidell on charges she opened fake cell phone accounts. De La Cruz faces similar charges in the Lafayette area and officials told WBRZ, they believe she drove I-10 then I-12 to get between Lafayette and Slidell and it's not out of the realm of possibility she stopped in our area to bamboozle people.
De La Cruz is accused of going from city to city and aquiriing new cell phones on per-existing customer accounts by using fake identification. After getting new phones, she sells them online and keeps the cash, police said. Allegations are so well-known, Sprint even sent an email to employees warning of the scheme. It was a Sprint employee who noticed De La Cruz, police said, and alerted them when she stopped in St. Tammany Parish.
When she was arrested, police said they found six Apple iPhones and one Apple iPad; they were believed to be stolen.
The case is still under investigation, and it is believed that De La Cruz has been traveling across the United States committing these fraudulent types of crimes, police said.
More charges are expected to be filed against De La Cruz.
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