An alleged SIM swapping scammer spent all the proceeds from the stolen crypto on luxurious sports cars, gold jewelry and royalties to rap music. According to recent court documents, the scammer also bought a house and gifts to family and friends.
Anthony Francis Faulk was arrested on Wednesday in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, where he resides. The 23-year-old is alleged to have targeted executives of crypto startups, stealing their crypto through SIM swapping techniques.
New court documents show that he used the proceeds to fund a lavish lifestyle. Filed with the District Court for the Northern District of California, the documents revealed that most of the proceeds went into fancy sports cars. These include a 2019 Cadillac XTS and a 2018 Ferrari 488 Spider Convertible. He also bought a Nissan Rouge for a relative, Lisa Lynn Faulk.
Faulk also spent some of the money on jewelry, in line with his lavish lifestyle. They include a Vincent Diamond Tennis necklace, an Enzo diamond bracelet, diamond stud earrings and a custom Rolex. He also bought a house worth over $940,000. Perhaps the most unique thing he bought with the money was royalties to music, with most of the records being rap music.
All the property is subject to criminal forfeiture if the prosecution can prove that it was obtained with the proceeds from Faulk’s criminal deeds.
As revealed in a press release by the Department of Justice last week, Faulk and others used deception, fraud and social engineering techniques to induce cellphone service providers to port cellphone numbers from their actual owners to them. They then used the cellphones to gain access to emails and subsequently, to online crypto storage accounts. They also allegedly attempted to extort their victims.
Faulk made his initial appearance in the Western District of Pennsylvania last week. He was released on a $250,000 bond and is scheduled to appear before the court again on January 9 next year. If found guilty of the wire fraud charge, he faces 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Additionally, he could spend two years in prison if convicted of the extortion charge as well as a $250,000 fine.
“The court also may order an additional term of supervised release, fines or other assessments, restitution, and forfeiture, if appropriate,” the indictment stated.
A rising number of crypto owners have fallen victims to SIM swapping, with American telecom company AT&T being in the center of many of these scams. As CoinGeek reported, two men were charged in November with SIM swapping and stealing crypto worth up to $550,000. The two Massachusetts natives targeted at least 10 U.S. victims.
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