Chris Gatling was arrested on Thursday for a very different kind of steal than he’s been paid for. The former New York Nets all-star has been collared on charges of credit card fraud.
Online scams are nothing new, with criminals often using the guise of a dating site profile to put ignorant victims in debt. Usually, they tell you they’re having money problems and ask for more than you can afford. When you tell them about it, they have people living in the United States send fraudulent checks which you’re expected to cash and send through Western Union or some other method of wire transfer. In the end, you find that the bank has closed your account, if they don’t simply authorize a loan payment system.
This time the scammer had a degree of fame about him. Born in New Jersey, Gatling played for the NBA 11 years and eventually moved to Scottsdale, Arizona. He wasn’t done playing games, allegedly.
Ex-NBA All Star — Arrested In Arizona… Alleged Kingpin In I.D. Theft Scam http://t.co/XOHfWrI9fv
— TMZ (@TMZ) May 29, 2015
Scottsdale police had Chris Gatling arrested after discovering he had allegedly duped a fitness studio owner with unauthorized credit card information. After meeting on a dating site, he allegedly had the business owner run payments for him through a Phoenix call center. The agreement was that she could keep ten percent of the profits from his “online business.”
These transactions turned out to be fraudulent and put the business in debt for $90,000, a cost she couldn’t afford. She lost her business in the deal and the authorities were alerted to the con.
Gatling was apprehended while meeting with his probation officer for different dirty deeds performed in 2013. According to New York Daily News, he had squatted on an Arizona home and listed it for rent on Craigslist.
Online fraud is a very active form of crime which is constantly evolving and evading authorities, even branching off into IRS tax fraud.
Be safe and careful, and you might just avoid falling for scams like the one that got Chris Gatling arrested this Thursday.
[Image via Otto Greule Jr / Getty Images]