Police in Calgary say the family group went around to about 15 recreational areas like dog parks and ski hills and stole ID cards and other items with personal information from parked cars, for a total of 19 victims, reports the Calgary Herald.
They allegedly opened up Home Depot credit card accounts with limits of about $1,500, which they used to buy gift cards amounting to about $56,000. According to officials, the family then turned around and sold those gift cards for a reduced price on online auction sites.
“This was a very complex investigation,” said a police rep with the economic crimes unit. “The fact that it was a family alleged to have all been involved is quite unique… And the extra steps (to avoid detection from police), I have not generally seen in any investigation I’ve done.”
Home Depot caught a whiff of something suspicious and started its own investigation before bringing it to the Calgary police.
All told, the family is facing 114 charges, including identity fraud, laundering proceeds of crime, breach of recognizance and more.
Five members of same family charged in identity theft scam [Calgary Herald]