Here’s a complex situation to consider: Federal authorities swept up dozens of Bergen County residents and others early today in connection with a “crime superstore” that sold stolen identities that helped customers open lines of credit and conduct other types of illicit business. The victims? Banks and credit card companies.
I applaud anyone and everyone who brings law breakers to justice. But I’m not raising my hand if someone asks whether I sympathize with those who were “hurt” by these crimes.
Our country, our economy, our very way of life has been forever changed by the banks, by the mortgage lenders, by the fat cats who lined their pockets with enough bonuses and golden parachutes to start their own individual space programs.
In this case, a total of 53 people are charged, most of them from our neck o’ the woods. Nearly four dozen of them were rousted from their beds this morning in Palisades Park, Tenafly, River Edge and elsewhere and brought to FBI headquarters by hundreds of federal and local investigators. as media cameras rolled (Gee, how did they know to be there?).
One of those charged, Kang Hyok Choi, wasn’t part of the perp walk. He has been in custody nearly two years, awaiting trial for a triple murder in Tenafly.
Authorities won’t say who tipped them off to the operation, but justice junkies might put their money on Choi, who may have been spending all this time trying to strike a deal with Bergen County prosecutors in exchange for inside information about the crew, which authorities said ripped off lenders to the tune of millions of dollars.
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