MINEOLA, N.Y. – Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas announced that a Florida man was arraigned on an 18-count grand jury indictment yesterday for allegedly attempting to steal a Bentley Convertible by using a stolen identity.
James Gibson, 39, of Orlando, was arraigned before Judge Meryl Berkowitz yesterday and charged with:
- Attempted Grand Larceny in the Second Degree (a D felony)
- Five counts of Forgery in the Second Degree (a D felony)
- Six counts of Identity Theft in the First Degree (a D felony)
- Three counts of Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Second Degree (a D felony)
- Attempted Identity Theft in the First Degree (an E felony)
- Falsifying Business Records in the First Degree (an E felony)
- Attempted Grand Larceny in the Fourth Degree (an A misdemeanor)
Bail was continued at $300,000 bond or $150,000 cash. The defendant is due back in court on October 3 and faces a maximum of 2-1/3 years to seven years in prison.
“This defendant allegedly tried to use a stolen identity to drive off with a $135,000 Bentley Convertible,” DA Singas said. “Thanks to the quick actions of the dealership and the identity theft victim, this transaction was stopped, and police were called. If you think you may be a victim of identity theft, I urge you to call our tip line at 516-571-7755.”
DA Singas said that on August 22, the defendant allegedly attempted to purchase a 2015 Bentley Continental GT V8 Convertible valued at $135,000 from a car dealership in Jericho by using a stolen identity.
Gibson allegedly did this by signing paperwork in the name of an identity theft victim and giving the dealer a forged New Jersey Driver’s License with his photograph, but with the personal information of the victim.
After the dealer ran a credit check, the victim became aware of an attempted purchase in his name and called the dealership to stop the transaction. Without tipping off the defendant, the dealership contacted the Nassau County Police Department.
While the dealership waited for NCPD to arrive at the scene, employees continued with the transaction as if nothing was wrong. The defendant was arrested a short time later and allegedly found in possession of a fraudulent credit card.
Unit Chief Brian Heid of the Financial Crimes Bureau’s Vehicle Theft and Fraud Unit is prosecuting this case. Christopher Graziano, Esq. represents the defendant.
The charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless found guilty.