A deep entanglement of online currency, gold, and silver, and false identities appeared to unravel this week with the police seizure of $4.7 million in Bitcoin and criminal charges against two northwest Ohioans implicated in a prolific Fake ID scheme.
Two people — Toledoan Mark Alex Simon, 34, of the 4700 block of Stengel Drive, and Sarah M. Alberts, 34, of Perrysburg — have been arrested following a multiyear investigation into the production of false Identification Cards.
Shackled and dressed in an orange jumpsuit, Mr. Simon made a brief appearance in federal court Thursday, where Magistrate Judge James Knepp ordered that he be detained pending trial.
Judge Knepp found Mr. Simon indigent based on a financial affidavit listing his assets and liabilities and then appointed Toledo attorney Jane Roman to represent him.
Ms. Alberts is charged with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, conspiracy, money laundering, and manufacturing fake identification cards, according to affidavits filed in Toledo Municipal Court.
Making a purchase from “TedDanzigSR” required consumers to go through a number of online communities, following exact protocols that could be found in a detailed FAQ — frequently asked questions — on the website Reddit.
They could also explore a FAQ that detailed, among other things, how to make a purchase through dark web browsers such as Tor; how the sellers determine pricing and shipping options, and even how to utilize a “rewards” program for leaving positive reviews.
- Bitcoin at center of Toledo fake ID caseToledo Blade
- Feds seize $4.7 million in Bitcoin, arrest 2 in Ohio casecleveland.com
- Investigation of fake IDs nets $4.7M in bitcoins, gold barsMinneapolis Star Tribune
- Toledo man arrested, $4.7M in Bitcoin seized in large-scale fake ID caseGwinnettdailypost.com