Detroit — A Michigan man pleaded guilty to his role in formulating in federal court on Tuesday Elaborate fraud plans including artificial face masks..
John Christopher Coletti, 56, has pleaded guilty to wire fraud and spoofing for a plot that allowed unprotected gamblers to deceive more than $ 125,000 at multiple casinos in two states. He faces up to 20 years in prison for wire fraud and a minimum of 2 years in prison for spoofing fraud.
His tactics included wearing a face mask with a prosthesis that resembled an older white man before hitting a casino kiosk to withdraw thousands of dollars in cash. In another example, according to court documents, Colletti disguised himself wearing a hat, glasses, and a surgical mask.
“Coletti stole the identities of dozens of innocent people and dragged them all into his criminal program,” FBI special agent Timothy Waters, who is in charge of the Detroit field office, said in a statement. “The effects of personal information theft are serious and widespread for victims, and the FBI strives to hold everyone involved in this type of activity liable.”
Colletti first caught the attention of investigators in May 2019 when 10 personal information thefts were discovered at MGM Grand Casino Detroit for a total of $ 98,840. State investigators have proved the general suspect by checking the footage from surveillance cameras.
In one example, Colletti wears a prosthesis mask, a blue jacket, a dark visor cap, blue jeans, and sunglasses over the visor cap, and carries a messenger-type bag to walk closer to the MGM Grand Detroit. In just 36 minutes, he was able to make 15 transactions totaling $ 30,000 at various kiosks in the casino.
According to court documents, after his deal, Colletti is seen taking a taxi to Greektown outside the casino, walking to a restaurant and using the toilet. After about 10 minutes, security footage shows him leaving the restaurant without disguise. Instead, I wear a white T-shirt, blue jeans, and have a black plastic bag.
Colletti, in Mayetta, Kansas, on March 12, 2020, after security footage showed that he needed to wear a straw hat and glasses, use a mobility walker to withdraw $ 20,000 and offer social security. , Arrested for theft of personal information at Prairie Band Casino. Number for reporting reasons. When the guard who told him to go to the cashier’s cage approached, Colletti went to the bathroom instead and took off his disguise.
After he left the casino, security guards found clothes, a mobility walker, a Nissan car key, two Michigan driver’s licenses, and about $ 11,000 in cash in the toilet. The license contains information about the actual Michigan residents and has a photo and sticky note on the back with the victim’s social security number and phone number.
Video: This is the first non-smoking casino on the Las Vegas Strip
To run a casino kiosk where users can exchange tickets, break bills, and process jackpots, gamblers insert their driver’s license and then the last four digits of their social security number and phone number. You must enter the last 4 digits. According to investigators, Colletti targeted casino users of the VIP Preferred Program as victims by purchasing personal information over the Internet and produced fraudulent driver’s licenses in the victim’s name.
After his arrest, an investigation warrant was obtained and executed by the Prairie Band Potawatomi Tribal Police of Nissan Versa, a rental car in Colletti. Inside the car are 4 artificial face masks, a flash drive, 83 driver’s licenses, 14 multi-person insurance cards, 6 open water diver certification cards, 2 Binghamton University staff ID cards, and 19 people from various casinos. A player card was found. Most of it is from MGM. Grand casino.
Individual victims were repaid by Global Payments Gaming Services, the manufacturer of casino kiosks targeted by Colletti. As part of his judicial transaction, Colletti will have to pay GPGS $ 125,740 in full.
Colletti’s decision is scheduled for July 7.
Contact Miriam Marini at [email protected]
This article was originally published in Detroit Free Press: Michigan man wearing artificial limb mask pleads guilty to casino scheme