Nationwide Counterfeiting, Identity Theft Ring Brought Down


Pistols, assault rifles, narcotics and "a very large quantity'' of counterfeit travelers' and personal checks were taken into evidence during 12 searches carried out at 7 a.m. by a task force of 65 officers, Officer Mary Kusmiss said.

The police also collected numerous counterfeit ID's and stacks of personal profiles, which included names, birthdays, social security numbers and credit card information, according to Kusmiss.

Thousands of pieces of potential evidence were seized Thursday in the raids that were carried out in Berkeley, Oakland, Antioch, Stockton and elsewhere, the police said.

Two suspects, a 45-year-old Vallejo man and a 49-year-old Berkeley woman, whose names have not been released, were taken into custody during the sting, Kusmiss said.

Investigators expect more arrests to follow.

The search warrants and arrests are the fruit of a two-year investigation conducted jointly by the Berkeley police and U.S. Secret Service.

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