Victims of identity theft shocked - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Victims of identity theft shocked

TYLER, TX (KLTV) -

The wanted list for suspects involved in a huge East Texas identity theft ring is now down to five.

Tyler police identified 21 suspects who they say took out loans in other people's names, then had that money transferred into their bank account.

Investigators said 45 victims have come forward, several of them from Tyler. KLTV is not revealing the victims names to protect their identities.

The victims are all asking the same question: how did these 21 suspects get some of their most personal information?

"Peace of mind, we'd just like to know where it came from. I don't know Brandon Sessions or any of those people I saw pictures," said one victim, after reading the KLTV web story and looking over all 21 of those suspects names.

This couple said they had no idea any of this was happening until they received a letter in the mail.

"It was just to inform me that my account was overdue and I had never even heard of Speedy Cash. They are wanting us to repay a loan which we never received," one victim said.

"She even asked you to verify your social security number, didn't she?" one victim asked her husband. "They had the last four digits. So, it's pretty scary," she said.

Another victim said as shocking as this is, he is thankful the Tyler police are investigating and that the FBI has assisted.

The Better Business Bureau said there are some geographic areas in the United States that have a higher concentration of identity theft rings. Texas is one of them.

The BBB recommends victims notify the police or sheriff's office, contact bank creditors and merchants, and report the theft to free credit reporting agencies so they can put out a fraud alert.

They also said that many of these companies will use scare tactics to try to get people to pay the money, something you should not fall for.

Some victims of this identity theft ring said these companies mailed them letters and continue to call them six to 10 times a day trying to get a payment on money they never borrowed.

"They're just wanting me to pay something I never received. Someone received it posing as me. I just hope there's no more repercussions from it, you know?" said another victim.

Tyler police said they are continuing their investigation to find out how these suspects received East Texan's personal information. They are hoping more tips will come in so they can locate the last five suspects in this ring.

Copyright 2013 KLTV. All rights reserved.

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