Two arrested in Chino identity theft case involving hundreds of victims

CHINO Deputies arrested two women on Tuesday after a simple credit card theft investigation revealed a larger scale operation that unearthed hundreds of identity theft victims, officials said.

Josephine Chai, 30, and Jessica Duong, 25, both of Chino, were taken into custody after deputies served a search warrant at Chai’s Chino home in the 14000 block of Ironbark Avenue.

Detectives uncovered what they described as an identity theft ring allegedly led by Chai.

Authorities recovered dozens of allegedly forged or altered credit cards issued in the suspect’s name, as well as other names; several computers; an embossing machine; a credit card manufacturing machine; several card encoders; foil used to emboss fraudulent credit cards; a card encoder; several stock credit cards; a money counter; and hundreds of documents containing the personal information of other probable victims, including bank statements, bills and other mail.

Deputies also discovered a 3D printer that was actively creating a lower receiver for an AR-15 type assault rifle, officials said.

“An AR-15 is comprised of two main bodies,” former U.S. Army weapons specialist James Sinclair said. “There’s an upper and a lower. The lower regulates ammunition expenditure and is regulated by the government.”

According to the Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms website it is unlawful for any person to produce a firearm as proscribed in federal regulations..

Deputies also found a lower receiver previously manufactured loaded with live ammunition, as well as one loaded with airsoft ammunition.

Sheriff’s officials have not released the names of the alleged identity theft victims.

Chai and Duong were booked into West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga on suspicion of identity theft, possession of four or more credit card numbers, possession of personal information of more than 10 victims, forging access cards, unlawful acquisition of access cards, use of a stolen access card, possession of equipment to forge access cards, possession of card encoder, possession of controlled substance for sale, and manufacturing firearms.

Both are being held in lieu of $150,000 bail.

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