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Identity thief linked to disappearances


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POSTED: Thursday, October 15, 2009

A man serving a 30-year state prison sentence for stealing the identity and Kauai real estate of an associate who later turned up dead in the Philippines is facing federal charges in connection with that case and similar cases involving two other associates who disappeared after also traveling to the Philippines.

A federal grand jury returned an indictment in January charging Henry Calucag Jr. and his girlfriend, Debra Anagaran, with money laundering and wire and mail fraud for taking and selling the St. Louis Heights home of Arthur S. Young.

Young disappeared after traveling to the Philippines in 1990 to meet Calucag to receive his commission for the sale of a helicopter, according to the indictment. The transaction was bogus, the indictment said.

A grand jury added new charges against Calucag yesterday involving the Kauai property of John Elwin and money from the sale of a Kaneohe condominium of Douglas Ho. The charges include inducing someone to travel overseas as part of a scheme to defraud that person.

Philippine authorities found Elwin's body outside Manila in May 2006. It had gunshots wounds in the head and back. Elwin went to the Philippines to take possession of a condominium he thought he purchased through Calucag, the indictment said.

Calucag later took possession of a piece of land Elwin owned and used his credit card to buy items online. A state jury found him guilty of theft, identity theft, forgery and credit card fraud.

Ho disappeared in December 2004 after traveling to the Philippines to meet Calucag. Ho went there after giving Calucag $280,000 to invest in a computer and Internet-related venture and $250,000 to purchase a condominium there, according to the indictment.

Both the business venture and condominium purchase were bogus, the indictment said.