Six city men have been charged with stealing $300,000 in checks from U.S. Postal Service (USPS) mail collection boxes throughout northern New Jersey, according to U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito’s office.
Ismael Alicea, Jr., 25; Yerrisson Garcia-Rodriguez, 23; Jerry Lake-Rodriguez, 25; Johan Lake-Rodriguez, 26; Brayan Ulloa-Ulloa, 24; and Jefersson Quezada, 21, are each charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud.
Each, except for Alicea, is also charged with bank fraud. Garcia-Rodriguez, Jerry Lake-Rodriguez, Johan Lake-Rodriguez, and Quezada are additionally charged with aggravated identity theft. Alicea and Johan Lake-Rodriguez are charged with possession of stolen mail.
Authorities said the group stole checks from mail collection boxes in Passaic, Bergen, Morris, and Middlesex counties. They fraudulently deposited the checks into various bank accounts within days of stealing them.
Some of them broke into mail collection boxes using pry bars late at night, authorities. Authorities identified $300,000 worth of checks that were deposited into their bank accounts.
Four of the accused were arrested on Monday morning. Each appeared before a judge in Newark federal court. Johan Lake-Rodriguez is in state custody and will make his initial appearance later this week.
Jefersson Quezada remains at large.
Authorities said each could face 30 years in prison and $1 million in fine.