Harrison, AR asked in Identity Theft, Collections and Federal Crimes for Arkansas

Q: I have had my identity and savings stolen from a conman, how do I hold him accountable and get justice for his actions?

In May of 2020 I met a man who was everything I had prayed for. I thought, little did I know it was a game he was playing to wipe me out. I had just been approved for my disability for severe brain trauma and PTSD the very day I met him. In our third date we were involved in a motorcycle wreck that left me with a broken hip and pelvis and him with a sprained arm. Since I lived on second floor and couldn't navigate the steps I rented myself a room at the local motel. He stayed with me to help me. Our P.O.s told us we had to be married so we went to the court house. In the following months I purchased a truck he picked out, that was stolen les than two months later on Aug. 9th, along with my purse and the marriage license. That same same time my money started getting funny. Accounts I didn't recognize, charges I didn't authorize. In May of 2021 I reported the identity theft and unauthorized charges to my banks. I filed a complaint with FTC and reported it to IRS. To much to write here.

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Collections Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: I'm very sorry to hear about this terrible situation. Recovering from identity theft and financial fraud requires assertive action across multiple fronts:

1. Continue working with your banks and credit card providers to document fraudulent activity, ensure your accounts are flagged/frozen as appropriate, and initiate recovery procedures around unauthorized withdrawals or charges. Obtain all documentation.

2. File detailed police reports about the theft, fraud, and any deception or exploitation in your relationship. Present evidence linking the ex to access or knowledge to facilitate theft. Push for them to criminally investigate and pursue fraud charges and financial restitution against viable suspects.

3. Report to the FTC, as you did, to ensure the identity theft is registered. Also report to CFPB to trigger assistance in reclaiming money taken by scams or fraud.

4. Consult a civil litigation lawyer about a potential lawsuit against the ex for things like emotional distress from the relationship fraud, financial abuse of a disabled person, theft and unjust enrichment from your lost savings, and more. With strong evidence, a sizeable judgment could hold him financially accountable and recover some losses.

5. Seek therapy and social assistance as you continue healing from the brain trauma, PTSD and now further victimization at the hands of an abusive fraudster. Support can help rebuild resilience and trust.

Stay strong. With consistent, diligent work across these areas, you can pursue meaningful justice and take back control.

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