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Document and Benefit Fraud
11/22/2011

Healthcare aide sentenced for defrauding elderly couple

NEW YORK – A Liberian national was sentenced to four years in prison for various crimes related to her stealing the identities of an elderly couple in Scarsdale, N.Y. This sentencing stems from an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Enforcement Removal Operations (ERO), the U.S. Secret Service, the U.S. Department of State, the Social Security Administration, the U.S. Marshals Service and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

Isabel Wilson served as the couples' live-in home healthcare aide. She opened several credit cards in the couples' names.

According to court documents, in December 2005, Wilson was hired as a live-in home healthcare aide for an elderly couple who suffered from dementia. Wilson used the couples' names, Social Security numbers, and dates of birth to open seven credit cards in their names. Wilson then used those cards to purchase more than $73,000 in luxury goods for her husband and herself, including plane tickets, furniture, clothing and a down payment on a Porsche.

Wilson hid the scheme by having some of the credit card statements sent to a post office box that she obtained near the couples' Scarsdale, N.Y., home. When she applied for that post office box, Wilson presented the postal clerk with a U.S. passport as identification. Wilson obtained that passport by using the identity of a third victim, a woman from Rhode Island. Before getting the passport, Wilson went to the Queens County Court and changed the Rhode Island woman's name to her own, thereby ensuring that the fraudulently obtained passport would have her own name on it.

Wilson lied repeatedly to federal authorities.

  • She lied about her identity to U.S. Secret Service agents who were looking for her in order to arrest her;
  • She lied to a pretrial services officer and deputy U.S. marshal about her place of birth, claiming falsely to have been born in North Carolina;
  • She falsely told a deputy U.S. marshal that she was a U.S. citizen; and
  • She provided the deputy marshal with a Social Security number that had been assigned by the Social Security Administration after Wilson falsely stated in a Social Security Card application that her place of birth was North Carolina.

Wilson was convicted of one count of access device fraud; one count of aggravated identity theft; one count of use of a passport obtained by fraud; one count of use of a Social Security number assigned on the basis of false information; three counts of false statements to a federal officer; and one count of false claims to U.S. citizenship.