NEW BERN — A federal jury (Friday) convicted Alejandro Garlynn Williams, 40, of conspiracy, access device fraud, and aggravated identity theft, finding him guilty of all counts in the indictment against him.
According to court records and evidence presented at trial, Williams began working as a retail sales consultant at an AT&T store location in Fayetteville, North Carolina in March 2016. In that capacity, Williams’ responsibilities included activating AT&T customer accounts and selling cell phones for those accounts.
In October 2017, Williams was introduced to Anthony Jamison, a resident of Hamlet, North Carolina. Jamison was named as a co-conspirator in the indictment and previously pleaded guilty in this matter. Between October 2017 and January 2018, Williams and Jamison conspired to establish AT&T cellular accounts with the stolen personal identifying information of unwitting victims in North Carolina and South Carolina for the purpose of obtaining thousands of dollars’ worth of high-end cellphones for resale on the black market.
The evidence at trial established that Jamison would provide Williams with the victim PII, to include Social Security numbers and dates of birth, through text messages and other means. Jamison would then send various recruits into the AT&T store to meet with Williams to act as the “customer” for the surveillance cameras. Thereafter, among other things, Williams would use the stolen victim PII to run hard credit checks, activate lines of service in the victims’ names, and, ultimately, issue cell phones to the “customer” for resale by Jamison.
To facilitate the conspiracy, Williams ensured the phones were activated and sold under financing plans that required little or no payment from the “customer” at the point of sale, but which made the victims personally liable for the devices without their knowledge. Many victims only learned of the scheme when they discovered AT&T bills addressed to them in the mail. During one particular transaction, for example, Williams used the stolen personal identifiers of a North Carolina victim to issue nine iPhone devices, valued at over $8,500, on installment plans created using that victim’s name and credit history. In total, the associated losses to AT&T as a result of the scheme, including phones and accessories, was in excess of $85,000.
Michael F. Easley, Jr., United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina made the announcement after United States District Judge Louise W. Flanagan accepted the verdict. Assistant United States Attorney Adam F. Hulbig prosecuted the case on behalf of the government. The United States Secret Service was assigned to the investigation of the matter and received valuable assistance from AT&T’s asset protection unit.