Evidence grows in swindling case


POSTED: Thursday, June 11, 2009

A Kailua woman awaiting trial in state court on identity theft and related charges involving 11 people lived part-time in a Manhattan Beach, Calif., condominium where police seized evidence of more potential victims.

Detective Joe Aiello, of the Manhattan Beach Police Department, said officers seized credit reports and personal profiles of people from the condominium. He said his department turned over the evidence to Honolulu police and are assisting in the local investigation because, so far, they have not identified any victims in California.

An Oahu grand jury returned an indictment May 12 charging Susan Shaw with 122 crimes including identity theft, credit card theft, forgery, unauthorized possession of confidential personal information, money laundering and using a computer to commit a crime.

At the time of the indictment, Deputy Prosecutor Chris Van Marter said the loss to seven credit card companies was more than $160,000. Police have yet to analyze information from a laptop computer Shaw had with her when she was arrested at Honolulu Airport upon returning from California May 7 and two desktop computers seized at her home, and Van Marter said the amount of loss and number of victims probably will rise.

The day after the indictment, Aiello said a woman who said she is a friend of Shaw's called Manhattan Beach police and told them she is afraid she might be a victim. She also told them Shaw maintained a residence in Manhattan Beach.

According to a written statement Aiello submitted for the search warrant, the woman could not provide police with an address but could show them where Shaw lived. Aiello said he also spoke to a man who said Shaw used to live with him in Hermosa Beach and another man who said he is Shaw's boyfriend.

Both men confirmed Shaw's address. The second man said he had no idea Shaw was married until he read about her arrest online, Aiello said.

Van Marter described both men as Shaw's fiances and said one of them is a doctor.

Shaw remains in custody unable to post $1 million bail.