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Scam Victim Helps Arrest Suspect

Updated: Tuesday, April 30 2013, 10:06 PM CDT

It's what every victim of a scam wants, to go from victim to victorious. A small business owner had a moment like that and he's sharing his story to keep others from losing their hard-earned cash.

"We felt pretty bad. We lost $6, 000," said William Kaan.

William Kaan was angry. He installed two air conditioning units and then discovered the credit cards used to pay for the work were no good. Postal inspectors told Kaan he was the victim of an identity theft scam.

"It began with the perpetrator ordering cards, credit cards in other people's names sent to a specific address," said U.S. Postal Inspector Andre Brown

The suspect then used the fraudulent cards to go on a shopping spree.

Number of victims: About 90. Total losses: $2.5 million dollars.

William Kaan was one of those victims until he turned the tables on the suspect. "One of the undercover agents was with me," said Kaan.

The small business owner went undercover with postal inspectors to catch the fraudster in the act. 

"We made an estimate for a new air conditioning unit. He didn't want to give me his card. He said he'd call it in. When we got back here, we called in a card -- it was bad," said Kaan.

"I told him on the phone, that card is no good. He said, 'wait a minute I got another card.' He gave us another number, we ran that and it was a bad card, too," said Kaan.

Postal inspectors quickly arrested the suspect.

"Don't let it go, don't think that your money is lost. It might still be there, but you still want to put the fellow where he belongs if he's doing it to a lot of people. Take care of your own business," advises Kaan.

To insure you're not a victim of identity theft, order and review copies of your credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies every year.

Equifax -
Experian -
TransUnion -

By Bettie Cross

Scam Victim Helps Arrest Suspect

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