Brooklyn couple arrested for identity theft

Brooklyn couple arrested for identity theft

4/13/2007 – There’s something about Emerick and Donna Martin and real estate deals that leads to trouble, officials say.

The Brooklyn couple was arrested Friday on charges they stole the identity of a Queens man and then used over $1 million in ill-gotten gains to purchase a Dix Hills home on Long Island.

Investigators with the Queens District Attorney’s Office said the pair, who are married and both 42 years old, also used multiple credit cards and a forged drivers license in their victim’s name to make purchases.

They tried to get a $90,000 loan to buy a late model Mercedes-Benz S550 but were thwarted when they couldn’t produce a valid license for the bank, said investigators.

Emerick Martin was arrested Thursday on his way to his federal parole officer in Central Islip, said a law enforcement source. He was sentenced to five years probation in June 2005. The federal case stemmed from a wider series of charges in 2002 against Martin, his wife and others involving allegations of the filing of false mortgage applications.

Donna Martin pleaded guilty in 2006 to a mail fraud charges in that case and is awaiting sentencing, said her attorney Anthony La Pinta of Hauppauge. She was also arrested Thursday.

In the new Queens case, investigators charged that the Martin’s took over the identity of David Clarke of Rosedale, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said in a statement. The Martins used Clarke’s identity to get a $1.1 million in mortgages to buy the Dix Hills home.

But after the Martins and an unnamed accomplice tried to take out an additional $180,000 mortgage on Clarke’s home in Rosedale, the plan backfired, said Brown. Clarke got suspicious after he received papers related to the mortgage in the mail and went to authorities.

The Martins were ordered held on $250,000 bail Friday by Queens Criminal Court Judge William Harrington after pleading not guilty. Along with second-degree attempted grand larceny, the Martins were charged with first-degree identity theft, scheme to defraud and other charges.

If convicted they face up to seven years in prison, said Brown. The couple is due back in court May 1.

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