Man Arrested, Accused Of Operating Mail Fraud, Identity Theft Ring


Wednesday, October 2nd 2013, 10:32 pm
By: News 9


A man is in the Cleveland County Jail, accused of orchestrating an elaborate mail fraud and identity theft ring in the metro.

This mail and identity theft ring has victims in at least three different counties dating back to April. Now the Secret Service, US Postal Service and several other agencies are involved in the investigation.

Investigators say this is a giant red flag that can expose you to mail fraud and that's why Zachary Suter is now in the Cleveland County Jail.

"I'm not real excited about it, don't like that's occurring so near, so close to me," said neighbor John Cave.

A victim on this SW Oklahoma City street had two paychecks stolen out of his mailbox and his neighbors are watching closely now.

"I don't want someone coming up with my information and using it wrongly or buying stuff or putting stuff in my name," Cave said.

Investigators say the thieves were operating in two ways. Either by stealing mail before the victims could get to the mailbox or when the victims lifted the red flag to mail of things, like bills and checks.

Investigators say Suter would alter the "pay to the order of" line to include his name using a computer program. Then many of the check amounts were changed from something like $98 to $998. Norman Police tracked the operation back to a Super 8 hotel.

Court documents say Suter and a woman used two fake $10 bills to pay for a room and that's where police found a laptop computer, printers, check writing software and check stock paper. They say it was an elaborate scheme, made easy with a mailbox.

"Do not raise that red flag on your mail box, it's like neon to thieves. It's saying, steal my mail, with my checks outgoing," said Tom Easley with the Norman Police Department.

More arrests could be made. Two of the victims did not want to go on camera, but tell News 9 they saw their altered checks afterwards and they were shocked at how believable they looked.