FROM: 
Stephen Gibbons, Assistant District Attorney   CONTACT PERSON:
James Sibley, Deputy District Attorney
REACT Task Force Project Director
High Technology Crimes Unit
(408) 792-2823       For Release on September 30, 2003   LENGTHY PRISON SENTENCE FOR YOUNG IDENTITY THIEF   On September 30, 2003, Linda Thi Vo, 21, a San Jose resident was sentenced to six years state prison for a series of identity thefts and fraud committed throughout Santa Clara County.  Vo was apprehended as the result of a joint investigation by the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office, San Jose Police Department’s High Technology Crimes Unit, and the United States Postal Service. Between December 2001 and August 2002, Vo stole mail from hundreds of victims and used information from the stolen mail to commit fraud, establish utility service, make internet purchases, and participate in on-line gambling.   Despite Vo’s youth and lack of significant criminal record, the probation department found the lengthy prison sentence appropriate, noting “the defendant stole mail from hundreds of unsuspecting victims and subsequently used their personal information to open fraudulent accounts, and forged the stolen checks to commit theft. The present matter affected many people and caused extensive financial loss….” A Santa Clara County prosecutor assigned to the REACT High Technology Crimes Task Force prosecuted Vo.  REACT (Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team) is a multi-jurisdictional task force funded by grants from the Governor’s Office of Criminal Justice Planning with participating agents from five Bay Area counties, as well as state and federal agencies.  REACT operates a separate unit to specifically focus on the investigation and prosecution of Identity Theft. Vo still faces Federal prosecution for mail theft and possession of stolen mail.  

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