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September 22, 2022
|Financial Crimes, Covid-19
As early as July and August 2020, Darris Cotton submitted at least 16 fraudulent applications for unemployment using other people’s names, dates of birth, and social security numbers.
August 24, 2022
|Operational, Covid-19, Enforcement and Removal
Facility status and interventions for COVID-19 management are based on determinations by, and in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Guidance on Prevention and Management of Coronavirus Disease 2019 in Correctional and Detention Facilities.
August 19, 2022
|Operational, Student and Exchange Visitor Program, Covid-19
ICE is proposing creating a framework under which the Secretary of Homeland Security could authorize alternative options for document examination procedures associated with the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. The notice of proposed rulemaking is seeking input from the public regarding making permanent some of the current COVID-19 pandemic-related flexibilities to examine employees’ identity and employment authorization documents for the Form I-9.
May 19, 2022
|Covid-19, Financial Crimes
The lead defendant is 37-year-old Natalie Le Demola. She is currently serving a life prison sentence after she was convicted in 2005 of first-degree murder. 32-year-old Carleisha Neosha Plummer of Los Angeles is also charged. She was a close associate of Demola in prison until she was paroled in July 2020.
April 12, 2022
|Document and Benefit Fraud, Covid-19
James Theodore Polzin, 48, of Gilbert, Arizona, pleaded guilty in October 2021.
January 28, 2022
The seized website was purporting to be a resource for responding to COVID-19 from the Department of Labor. It also listed several fraudulent commercial contracts that individuals could bid on in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The fraudulent domain purported to allow users to sign in with their business email and password in an attempt to steal business credentials that could have been utilized to illegally/surreptitiously access protected data.
December 28, 2021
In a complaint filed in August 2020 in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, the government alleged that Thu Phan Dinh, Tran Khanh and Nguyen Duy Toan engaged in a wire fraud scheme designed to profit from the COVID-19 pandemic. The defendants operated more than 300 websites that fraudulently purported to sell products in the United States that became scarce during the pandemic, including hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes.
December 17, 2021
|Covid-19, Financial Crimes
Jason Coleman, 40, and Kimberly Coleman, 38, of Mesa, Arizona, made their initial appearance in federal court recently on a 62-count indictment charging them with Conspiracy, Bank Fraud, Wire Fraud, and Transactional Money Laundering. A federal grand jury previously indicted the Colemans and seven other individuals in connection with a fraudulent scheme to obtain approximately $23 million in PPP loans.
December 15, 2021
Hamza Abbas, 29, Khalid Abbas, 55, Abdul Fatani, 55, all of Richmond; and Syed Ali, 53, of Sugar Land, are set to make their initial appearances Dec. 16 before U.S. Magistrate Judge Andrew M. Edison.
December 15, 2021
|Student and Exchange Visitor Program, Covid-19, Labor Exploitation
This extension will continue to apply the guidance previously issued for employees hired on or after April 1, 2021, and work exclusively in a remote setting due to COVID-19-related precautions.
November 15, 2021
Hassan Kanyike, 30, of Santa Clarita, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Virginia A. Phillips, who also ordered him to pay a $20,000 fine and $1,302,550 in restitution to the SBA and four victim lenders. Kanyike pleaded guilty on March 29 to one count of wire fraud.
November 2, 2021
Odunayo “Baba” Oluwalade, age 25, of Windsor Mill, Maryland, pleaded guilty Oct. 29 to a federal wire fraud conspiracy in connection with a scheme purporting to sell COVID-19 vaccines by fraudulently replicating the website of a biotech company that has an authorized COVID-19 vaccine.
September 24, 2021
Andranik Amiryan, 42, was sentenced late Thursday afternoon by U.S. District Judge Dolly M. Gee, who also ordered him to pay $650,600 in restitution. Amiryan pleaded guilty on April 28 to one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud.
July 22, 2021
|Cyber Crimes, Covid-19
The fraudulent websites allegedly offer a number of drugs for sale for the experimental and unapproved treatment or prevention of COVID-19. Instead, the domains were allegedly used to collect the personal information of individuals visiting the sites in order to use their information for nefarious purposes, including fraud, phishing attacks and/or deployment of malware.
May 7, 2021
Mustafa Qadiri, 38, of Irvine, was named in a federal grand jury indictment returned Wednesday charging him with four counts of bank fraud, four counts of wire fraud, one count of aggravated identity theft, and six counts of money laundering.
May 3, 2021
|Covid-19, Cyber Crimes
According to the affidavit filed in support of the seizure, the HSI Intellectual Property Rights Center (“IPRC”) and the HSI Cyber Crimes Center (“C3”) discovered an apparent fraudulent website, named “” A domain analysis conducted by HSI indicated the domain name was created on April 27, 2021, using an IP address located in Strasbourg. The registrant country was listed as Russia.
April 23, 2021
|Financial Crimes, Covid-19
Ahmad Kanan, 49, Madison, Wisconsin was sentenced 42 months in federal prison and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $147,060. Kanan committed the CARES Act Fraud while under indictment and awaiting trial in the access device fraud case. He pleaded guilty in both cases on October 2, 2020.
April 16, 2021
ICE HSI marks the one-year anniversary of the announcement of Operation Stolen Promise, the ongoing operation protecting the United States from COVID-19 related crime.
April 7, 2021
|Covid-19, Cyber Crimes
According to the affidavits filed in support of these seizures, these investigations began in March 2021. Homeland Security Investigations and the National Intellectual Property Rights Center received notification of two fraudulent websites, “” and “” The third site, “,” was discovered by Homeland Security Investigations’ Cyber Crimes Center (C3) during ongoing investigations for malicious websites. The cases were referred to HSI Baltimore for investigation.
March 31, 2021
|Intellectual Property Rights and Commercial Fraud, Covid-19
The IPR Center, DoJ and the leading manufactures of the COVID-19 vaccine, are investigating reports of these fraudulent COVID-19 vaccine surveys enticing consumers to provide personal information with the promise of a prize or cash at the conclusion of the survey.
March 31, 2021
|Labor Exploitation, Covid-19
ICE today announced an extension of the flexibilities in rules related to Form I-9 compliance that was initially granted last year.  Due to the continued precautions related to COVID-19, the DHS will extend this policy until May 31, 2021.
March 29, 2021
According to court documents, Hassan Kanyike, 29, of Santa Clarita, admitted that he submitted six fraudulent PPP loan applications and two fraudulent EIDL applications.
March 25, 2021
|Covid-19, Financial Crimes
James Theodore Polzin, 47, of Mesa, was charged by criminal complaint, unsealed Wednesday, after he was ordered detained at a hearing in U.S. District Court, District of Arizona. He is charged with three counts of fraud in connection with major disaster or emergency benefits and three counts of wire fraud.
March 24, 2021
|Intellectual Property Rights and Commercial Fraud, Covid-19
With criminal groups producing, distributing and selling fake vaccines, the risks to the public are clear: these can include buying a product which not only does not protect against COVID-19, but poses a serious health hazard if ingested or injected. Such products are not tested, regulated or safety-checked. Legitimate vaccines are not for sale. They are strictly administered and distributed by national healthcare regulators.
February 25, 2021
|Intellectual Property Rights and Commercial Fraud, Covid-19
More than 460,000 counterfeit 3M N95 surgical masks destined to be used by first responders in the Puget Sound region were seized Wednesday by HSI's BEST, U.S. CBP and the FBI.

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Updated: 07/26/2021