Crack down on counterfeiters in heart of Boston

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March 14, 2013, 5:49 pm
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(NECN: Jennifer Eagan, Boston) - Investigators cataloged stacks of money and boxed up evidence inside a store in the heart of Downtown Crossing Thursday. 

Authorities say Shahab Yousheei ran a criminal ring from a kiosk at 449 Washington Street with the help of a network of runners. Yousheei is accused of using stolen identities to commit other crimes. 

"We allege it is a pretty extensive network," Attorney General Martha Coakley said at a news conference.

Authorities allege Yousheei worked a number of schemes. In one, he would allegedly use a stolen identity to open cell phone accounts, buy the smartphone offered at a discount to a new customer and then resell the phone at a much higher price.  Yousheei also allegedly created fake credit cards and had a hand in moving stolen jewelry.  

"We’re looking forward to continuing to keep pressure on those individuals who facilitate the bad acts of people who are breaking into homes or businesses and fencing their property," Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis said.

Detectives are working to identify and notify victims. 

"One thing we would say is, this address at this kiosk, anyone who had a purchase at that location should check not only their credit card but their credit rating report," Coakley added. 

Authorities believe Yousheei may have shipped some goods to customers overseas.

As detectives collected evidence inside, Yousheei’s family members darted to and from the store Thursday evening. Yousheei is 36 years old and from Brighton. He was arrested Thursday morning after authorities say they caught him purchasing counterfeit money.  

"Today is a good day. We’ve taken a dangerous criminal off the street," Commissioner Davis said of the arrest.

Yousheei is due in Boston Municipal Court Friday morning. He faces 10 charges, including identity theft and illegal possession of a credit card encoder.

Tags: Martha Coakley, Jennifer Eagan, Washington Street, Downtown Crossing , counterfeit , stolen identity, shahab david yousheei
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