On October 1, 2021, the US Department of Justice announced that Las Vegas native Fredrick Brown, a former civilian medical records technician/administrator for the US Army in South Korea, had been sentenced in the US District Court for the Western District of Texas to 151 months in prison. Brown pleaded guilty on October 29, 2019 to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering for his role in an identity-theft scheme that targeted more than 3,300 military-affiliated individuals including disabled veterans. Brown was also ordered to pay more than $2.3 million in restitution.
According to court documents, Brown admitted that, between July 2014 and September 2015, he took digital photographs of personally identifying information (PII) belonging to thousands of active duty, retired and reservist service members and their families, including names, social security numbers, contact information, and birthdates. He then shared the photographs with co-conspirators, who withdrew funds from victims’ bank accounts and accessed US Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs benefit sites in order to divert monthly benefit payments away from veterans. The co-conspirators, some of whom operated in the Philippines, recruited “money mules” who provided US bank accounts to receive the stolen funds, which were in part transferred via wire to co-conspirators in the Philippines.
In June 2020, co-defendant Trorice Crawford was sentenced to 46 months in prison and ordered to pay $103,700 in restitution. Co-defendant Robert Wayne Boling, Jr. was arrested in the summer of 2019 in the Philippines along with other co-conspirators.