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Leader of identity theft ring in Denver metro area convicted

Posted at 12:18 PM, Sep 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-03 14:19:05-04

GOLDEN, Colo. — A jury found a 29-year-old man guilty of running an identity theft ring in Jefferson County and the Denver metro area.

Michael John Mancuso, III was found guilty in Jefferson County court on Aug. 28 on 43 counts, including violation of the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act for engaging in a pattern of racketeering. He was identified as the ringleader of the group, according to the First Judicial District Attorney's Office.

He was one of eight people who were indicted in this criminal enterprise. According to the district attorney’s office, he was involved between December 2017 and April 2018.

The group illegally obtained financial and personal information of real people, which included their names, addresses and credit card information. They would then purchase services and items, which included bicycles, jewelry, clothing, motor vehicles, gift cards, and musical equipment, with the credit cards before selling those items to pawn shops. More than $38,000 was used in these fraudulent transactions.

In total, the group targeted 35 victims, including individuals and merchants.

The 43 counts that Mancuso was found guilty of include:
· Violation of the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act
· Thirteen counts of ID theft
· Seven counts of forgery
· Two counts of aggravated motor vehicle theft
· Two counts of theft
· Conspiracy to commit theft and ID theft
· Eight counts of theft
· Five counts of false information to a pawn broker
· Four counts attempted theft

His codefendants, who have all already been indicted and convicted, include:
· Jacob Wyatt Westfall, 21
· Faith Marie Knight, 27
· Matthew Paul Lane, 43
· Texie Shannon Lane, 36
· Dwone Daunte Extor, 21
· Chelsea Juanita Dix, 25
· Kristina Julie Babe, 41