Baggage Handler Convicted In Stolen CardScheme

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ALEXANDRIA, Va. - (07/21/05) -- A United Airlines baggage handler atDulles International Airport pleaded guilty Wednesday in federalcourt here to stealing mail containing credit cards, then passingon the cards to thieves who activated them and ran up $4 million oncharges on dozens of credit unions. Emmanuel Osho, 49, admittedthat he stuffed huge quantities of mail into a black duffel bag anddrove the letters to co-conspirators in New York where the cardswere used by 'strikers' to get fraudulent cash advances at creditunions and banks in about 100 towns along the East Coast. Thestolen cards were intended for about 2,000 people and all of thefinancial losses were absorbed by 56 credit unions and seven cardcompanies, according to prosecutors. Osho, a Nigerian citizen,pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud and faces up to 30 yearsin prison when sentenced in October. A co-conspirator, AdemolaIdowo, also pleaded guilty for his role in the scheme and wassentenced earlier to 63 months in prison. Several of the strikershave also been convicted of lesser charges.

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