A Flushing couple was arrested this week for allegedly stealing identities to buy and lease luxury cars, Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced on Friday, Aug. 14.
The NYPD found more than 187 credit cards taken out in different victims’ names in the couple’s home at the time of the arrest, the DA said.
Guang Jin and his live-in companion, Hua Shen, have been charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, criminal possession of a forged instrument and unlawful possession of personal identification for the scheme. Jin has additionally been charged with grand larceny, attempted grand larceny, criminal possession of stolen property and identity theft, Katz said.
The scheme began back in March 2019, when Jin began shopping for a car at a dealership in Westbury, Long Island. Using his terminally ill uncle’s identification, Jin bought a 2019 Alfa Romeo Giulia and leased a 2019 Alfa Romeo Stelvio, according to the charges.
Both cars were valued at more than $46,000 each.
Two months later, in July 2019, Jin bought a 2019 Ford Mustang, worth $52,000, at a dealership in Woodside by using a driver’s license belonging to someone else, the charges state.
About a year later, in May 2020, Jin used a driver’s license, social security card and credit card in another victim’s name to attempt to buy a Mercedes Benz GLC300, according to Katz. However, the salesperson at the dealership did not complete the paperwork and Jin never got the car.
On June 2, Jin leased a 2020 Lexus NX300 using the same identity he used to attempt to buy the Mercedes Benz, the DA said.
Jin’s uncle’s son-in-law, who was responsible for his father-in-law’s finances, became suspicious of Jin when his father-in-law began to get bills related to the credit cards Jin allegedly took out in his uncle’s name, Katz said.
On Thursday, Aug. 13, Jin and Shen’s home on 38th Avenue was searched by police, according to Katz. Law enforcement found more than 250 pieces of personal identification, 187 credit cards and more than 27 photo IDs, the DA said.
In addition to the stolen identities, police also found more than 40 grams of methamphetamine and heroin, according to Katz.
If convicted of the charges, Jin faces up to 12 years in prison and Shen faces up to 9 years in prison.
Both will return to court on Sept. 28, as ordered by Queens Criminal Court Judge Joanne Watters.