A Florida woman is accused of running two kinds of scams against the elderly.
In a cop’s version of BOGO (make one bust, get one free), 38-year-old Tiffany Strobl of Dania Beach was caught running an Arrested Grandson scam while getting caught running a basic Brookyln Bridge fraud.
Strobl, 38 was sentenced in January to two years for wire fraud and aggravated identity theft in the Grandson case. That sentence came down as she finished the five-month sentence for bank fraud and possession of false identification documents charges in the Brooklyn Bridge case.
The Justice Department lumped Strobl’s twin fraud arrests with other cases in the “largest elder fraud sweep in department history,” announced Friday. More than 200 people were charged with crimes that affected more than one million victims, according to Justice, and financial losses of over a billion dollars. In the Southern District of Florida, Justice figured the fraud schemes of more than 20 defendants cost victims more than $103 million.
Strobl’s first sliver of that came off an updating of the old Brooklyn Bridge scam, selling something large that isn’t yours or doesn’t exist (the name comes from early 20th century con man George Parker, who sold several suckers the Brooklyn Bridge).
According to court documents, Strobl advertised a 1976 GMC Eleganza motorhome on Craigslist. But the posting claimed the motorhome, generally considered among the finest built in the 1970s, was being sold by Jamie L. Bryant out of Salt Lake City.
By posing as “Jamie L. Bryant” online, Strobl hooked a buyer named G.C. for $6,800. On Feb. 16, 2017, G.C. sent a wire transfer through eBay Motors to a BB&T account ending in 3717 belonging to Kim J. Young. Strobl opened that account that day with fake identity documents with the name “Kim J. Young” but Strobl’s face. Then, she tried to come back to the bank to withdraw the $6,800 but bank policy prevented that.
That impatience put a malodorous air on Strobl to the BB&T branch banker, who called G.C. G.C. figured something wasn’t right because he had seen the recreational vehicle he was supposed to be buying back on Craigslist, this time out of Kansas. G.C. told the branch banker not to release the cash.
When Strobl returned on April 17, 2017, to withdraw $4,100 from the account, the branch banker called Broward Sheriff’s Office. After failing to answer questions about her date of birth and Social Security number, the 5-foot-11, 260-pound Strobl failed at skedaddling from the bank. She was busted with six driver’s licenses, five from Rhode Island and one from Maryland, cellphones and debit cards, including one from Netspend and one from TD Bank for a name with the initials L.J.
Turns out, L.J. lives in Tennessee. Using L.J.’s birthdate, Strobl cashed a check with L.J.’s name at a check cashing store in Strobl’s native Ohio in 2016. Surveillance video chronicled that as well as Strobl opening a checking account at a Jacksonville TD Bank on Jan. 27, 2017 in Jacksonville with L.J.’s Social Security number. Her first deposit after opening the account was a $5,000 wire transfer from 81-year-old Iowa resident L.O.
L.O. said in early February she got a phone call telling her that her grandson was in jail.
“She was told to wire $5,000 to L.J.’s TD Bank account, so that her grandson could bond out of jail,” Strobl’s admission of facts reads. “On Feb. 3, 2017, L.O. wired the money from her bank in Iowa. TD Bank records contain the details of the wire transfer. L.O. later learned her real grandson had never been arrested and had not called her for money.”
Strobl used the debit card to spend $1,208.48 at a Hollywood Quality Inn and Suites after staying there for six days under L.J.’s name. Court documents say Strobl spent $1,484.35 in a single Kwik Stop visit on Feb. 5, but don’t say how.