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State and federal agencies crack down on fraud, ID theft in joint operation

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 11:59 a.m. HST, Sep 28, 2012

Seven people have been arrested this week for counterfeiting, forgery and identification theft related crimes as part of an ongoing joint interagency investigation called Operation “Pick em Up.”

The interagency effort resulted in the indictment of 8 individuals on 13 counts of forgery, criminal possession of a forgery device and accomplice to forgery. Six of the indicted individuals have been arrested. A seventh suspect was indicted and arrested for the counterfeit manufacturing and distribution of U.S. currency, Hawaii state safety emblems, automobile insurance cards and Hawaii State driver’s licenses. 

The operation was conducted by the state Department of Public Safety’s Sheriff Division, U.S. Secret Service and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency. 

“This collaboration between the state Department of Public Safety and other law enforcement agencies is reflective of the Abercrombie administration’s focus on effectiveness and efficiency through collaboration, and is representative of our continued commitment to the safety and welfare of the community; these will always be top priority for us,” said Public Safety Interim Director Ted Sakai.

“The sheriff division will continue to serve and support our federal and county partners in every capacity to investigate and apprehend individuals who violate the law for personal gain,” State Sheriff Shawn Tsuha said. “These violations are far from ‘victimless’ and result in lost income to businesses, higher insurance costs for everyone, and increased identity theft risk to our community.”

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