LOS ANGELES (AP) — Federal authorities have arrested a dozen suspects and are seeking three more in an elaborate check-kiting scheme that defrauded Southern California banks out of at least $15 million over three years.
The Riverside Press-Enterprise reports the FBI said Wednesday the scheme was centered in the Koreatown area of Los Angeles.
Investigators say counterfeit checks were deposited into bank accounts and funds were immediately withdrawn before financial institutions realized the checks were fraudulent.
At least 500 incidents of fraudulent activity were found at banks in Riverside, Los Angeles, Orange and Ventura counties.
The fake checks deposited ranged in amounts from $2,300 to more than $28,000.
According to the indictment, each of the suspects has been charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud and bank fraud.
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