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Santa Monica Sex Offender Arrested in Thousand Oaks for Check Forging Scam
1900 Pico Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90405
By Jorge Casuso
September 26, 2019 -- A registered sex offender living in Santa Monica was arrested last week for running a check forging scam in Thousand Oaks that claimed eight young victims, police said.
Davante Bell, 25, was arrested September 19 and booked on several counts of identity theft, unauthorized computer access with fraud and forgery, according to investigators in the Ventura County city.
Once he took control of the accounts, Bell posed as the account holder and used the accounts to send direct messages requesting the victims' help cashing a check, investigators said.
After they agreed, Bell would ask the victims for their cell phone numbers and tell them the account holder’s brother-in-law would meet them at the bank with the checks, police said.
Bell would then "pose as the fictitious brother-in-law and provide the victims with fraudulently obtained checks that he then forged before giving them to the victims to cash at their bank."
The victims cashed the checks and gave the funds to Bell, who then drove away, police said.
"In the days following the fraudulent deposit, the victims learned that they had suffered a financial loss," detectives said.
Police have identified eight victims so far including four juveniles -- a 16-year-old girl and a 17-year-old girl from Thousand Oaks and two 17-year-old boys from the city.
The adult victims are a 19-year-old man from Thousand Oaks, a 19-year-old woman from Los Angeles, a 21-year-old woman from Azuza and a 20-year-old man from West Covina.
Any additional victims should call Detective Paul Ferruzza at 805-494-8231.
Bell is being held in the East County Jail on $250,000 bail, police said.
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