MANHATTAN (CN) – In a final burst of chutzpah, a credit-card forger gave the sentencing judge “fake letters of support from individuals and charitable organizations and altered photographs in which he digitally inserted his own image into photographs of disabled and elderly patients in hospitals and groups of children at school,” federal prosecutors said. It didn’t work. Daryl Simon was sentenced to more than 23 years in prison.
Simon ran a sophisticated credit-card forgery operation and swiped more than 1,200 people’s credit-card numbers. He pleaded guilty to credit-card fraud in September 2007, but ducked his sentencing hearing in January 2008 and became a fugitive, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in announcing his sentence.
After Simon booked, officers searched his basement apartment in the Bronx and found “multiple computers and hard drives, a credit card skimming and encoding device, a credit card embossing machine, high-resolution and thermal dye printers, a scanner, a box of white plastic used to make credit cards and identification cards, a large quantity of fake United States currency, and a gun silencer. The computers and hard drives were found to contain over 1,200 credit card account numbers and related personal information belonging to other people.”
They busted Simon in Astoria, N.Y., in October 2008.
In a final burst of chutzpah, U.S. District Judge Stephen Robinson found at sentencing “that in an attempt to try to convince the Court to impose a lower sentence, Simon had intentionally submitted to the Court fake letters of support from individuals and charitable organizations and altered photographs, in which he digitally inserted his own image into photographs of disabled and elderly patients in hospitals and groups of children at school.”
Judge Robinson called it an attempt to “commit a fraud on a court.” Simon’s final trick apparently did not help reduce his sentence of 285 months.