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Ask Tina Your Own Question
Tina, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 8775
Experience:  JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.
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It's quite simple. Three years ago (2013) I became the

Customer Question

It's quite simple. Three years ago (2013) I became the victim of identity theft. A Mr. Captan Omar received a voided check I wrote him for a business transaction I though he was an honest business man that turned out to incorrect but I only found that out a few weeks0s later. From the check he acquired my bank, account number my address, my business. my phone number etc Armed with that information he likely used something like Hashcat which considers passwords at 8 million/sec. to acquire passwords, security questions and IDs etc. Armed with that information he then had two people write small dollar value 6 checks valued at $198.92 and 5 checks at $200. He then without my knowledge banked these checks into two Bank of America accounts that I had just opened (3 years ago). All checks bounced and were returned. Bank of America promptly closed my accounts and about a month later it made a referral to Chex and EWS with a fraud notation. I was not aware that a) these checks had been deposited and b) that the bank made these referrals. I learned that later from monthly bank statements. I called into Chase bank July of this year (2016) and was advised that Chase found these referrals and denied my opening an account. I called into 7 other banks an encountered the same thing. I obtained an affidavit from Mr. Omar he owned up to the fraud and apologized. Now 3 years later I have no bank account either business or personal. My life is now complicated. I have written to BoA several times and get a "too bad" kind of a response. I have written twice more and BoA is now ignoring my letters. I have written both the CHEX and EWS and both state that there is nothing to change unless the bank removes the referral. I have decided to take BoA to small claims court to sue them to remove the wrongful EWS/CHEX. Also I at that time had two other accounts at US Bank. Mr. Omar also attacked them this time with two NSF checks one for $51,000 and one for $2000. Once again I was not aware he had done this. US Bank also closed my accounts and sent in a CHEX/EWS referral. I wish to sue US Bank and BoA to get these referrals removed . My aim is to have them remove these referrals so that I can get on with my life. I would also consider suing each of them for $2,500 which is the small claims limit. Mainly I want these EWS and CHEX referrals removed. I did nothing wrong they are attacking the victim of identity theft. I have lodged a police report with Scottsdale Police Department and that document is also available. Both banks have copies of these document and remain arrogant and refuse to remove these referrals. John Opie MD
JA: Since laws vary from place to place, what state is this in? And when did this happen?
Customer: Hi Pearl,
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: Arizona.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I have no clear concept as to why Mr. Omar (he now resides in Ghana), did this but I can surmise the following. If the checks happened to clear overnight armed with an ATM card with a Hashcat acquired PIN he could have gone to an ATM a day or so later and withdraw funds from my accounts. The checks did not clear the banks never sustained any financial damage and I never gained anything other than CHEX/EWS referrals. No financial transaction occurred to any entity. John Opie MD.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
The problem is that Small claims court has the jurisdiction to only award money damages, not to order removal of the negative reports. Were charges ever filed against this Omar? Did you take action with the banks within 30 days of discovery of these withdrawals on your accounts (30 days from the date of the bank statement on which they appeared, according to the account holder agreements)?
Was all proof of the frauds submitted to all of the banks, including any police reports?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'd be happy to sue the banks and receive $2,500 from each bank for wrongful referrals to CHEX and EWS. That wrongful info also got to Transunion, Equifax etc (my latest credit rating is 708 so that does not seem to be badly affected).
But my main aim is to get the referrals removed. A police report was made. Case file - M898500 (08/02/2016).
No charges were filed against Mr. Omar he lives mostly in Ghana. That seemed a waste of effort. SPD reports it as a Class IV felony.
Yes the discovery was made on July 9, 2016 when I tried to open a Chase account. BoA and US Bank were contacted July 27, 2016. EWS and CHEX were contacted a week prior. Around July 15, 2016.
Yes all docs were submitted to CHEX and EWS and Bank of America RSU (Risk services unit) and US Bank (CRA) management unit. John Opie MD
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
The problem is Small Claims cannot order removal. So the discovery was not made in a timely manner under your account holder agreement, as you said this happened in 2013 and you did not discover it until 2016? Or were these checks just cashed in 2016?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
34;Too many ❓ I'll just file a small claims document myself. Too many debit card bill with nothing achieved.
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
I am sorry if you think there are too many questions being asked of you, but we do not want to send you off to file a suit that will be dismissed, so we need to know the information. However, if you choose not to provide it feel free to do what you think you want to do.