A Westport resident has recovered more than $15,000 that was lost after his cell phone was stolen at an airport, police say.
Westport Police said it received a report from a victim of larceny on Wednesday, April 7 around 7 p.m.
The victim stated that his cell phone had been stolen from an airport while he was traveling in California, police say.
A few hours later, the victim noticed that a total of $15,472.31 had been transferred out of his Coinbase account, an application in which crypto-currency is managed, according to police.
Further investigation revealed that funds from this account were converted into United States currency which was then moved into a PayPal account, police say.
After an in-depth investigation that involved the preparation and execution of multiple search warrants for various records, police say they identified the suspect as Darren Carter of New Jersey.
Police also say Carter sent an apology email intended for the victim to the investigating detective.
“In this message, he not only confessed to taking the victim’s phone while he was also traveling in California but additionally admitted to transferring the victim’s Coinbase funds into a personal account,” police say.
The stolen funds were subsequently recovered from PayPal and returned to the victim, according to police, who also prepared a warrant for Carter’s arrest.
Carter was taken into custody on the active warrant on Monday, Aug. 26 after detectives traveled to Salem County Correctional Facility in Woodstown, New Jersey.
Carter was extradited back to Connecticut, where he was charged with first-degree identity theft as per the warrant. Carter was unable to post his court-set $150,000 bond and was scheduled to be arraigned on Tuesday, Aug. 27.
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