Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Harper Woods Man Using Prosthetic Facemasks Sentenced on Wire and Identity Fraud Charges

 A Harper Woods man, who wore prosthetic facemasks to hide his identity, was sentenced today to four years in federal prison on charges of wire fraud and identity fraud in a scheme to defraud and obtain money from the accounts of Global Payments Gaming Services Inc. (GPGS)’s VIP Preferred Program patrons, announced Acting United States Attorney Saima Mohsin.

Mohsin was joined in the announcement by Special Agent in Charge Timothy Waters, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Detroit Division.

John Christopher Colletti, 56, was sentenced by United States District Judge Linda V. Parker in United States District Court in Detroit this afternoon.

According to court records, beginning in or around April 26, 2019, and continuing through March 12, 2020, Colletti, with the intent to defraud, unlawfully accessed accounts in the names of several individual victims using GPGS’s kiosks located within various casino properties in at least two states, including the MGM Grand in Detroit. Colletti used names, driver’s license numbers, and the last four digits of Social Security Numbers assigned to known individuals in order to access one or more accounts in those individuals’ names. Upon gaining access to these accounts, Colletti initiated numerous transactions, withdrawing thousands of dollars from these accounts.  Colletti made these withdrawals with both the intent to defraud and knowledge of the fact that he was not entitled to the money in the victims’ accounts. Further, in making these withdrawals, Colletti attempted to disguise himself by wearing one or more full prosthetic facemasks. Colletti defrauded his victims out of approximately $125,740.00 dollars.

Colletti had in his possession pieces of personally identifiable information (PII) for approximately 300 identities, as well as several full prosthetic facemasks.

GPGS assumed the loss on behalf of its VIP Preferred Program patrons, who were the individual victims. As part of his guilty plea, Colletti will be required to pay restitution to GPGS in the full amount of $125,740.00.

The investigation of this case was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ryan Particka.

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