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Woman Charged with Identity Theft

Fairfax County police have charged a Chantilly woman with identity theft. She is Hydee Arellano, 37, of 13961 Rockland Village Drive, No. 104.

In a Jan. 17 affidavit for a warrant to search her apartment, Det. Brian Bayliss of the Financial Crimes Section of the Criminal Investigations Bureau, explained the case against her.

HE WROTE THAT, between Nov. 11 and Dec. 18, 2006, three different complaints of identity theft were filed with the police department. All three victims reported that someone had fraudulently used their personal information to open, or attempt to open, various credit-card and store-credit accounts.

"The majority of these fraudulent applications were opened online," wrote Bayliss. "When ordering merchandise using the accounts, the suspect making the fraudulent applications used the address of 13961 Rockland Village Drive, No. 104, Chantilly, Va. for purpose of delivery of the purchased items."

According to the detective, Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) records and "prior police contact" show that Hydee Arellano lives at that address in apartment 104. He also checked with the Virginia Employment Commission about her.

Bayliss' inquiry revealed that Arellano "worked at the same doctor's office which all three victims had patronized a few days before their personal information was used to open fraudulent accounts."

He noted, as well, that she has a prior conviction for credit-card forgery. In 2001, Arellano was sentenced in Fairfax County Circuit Court to 18 months in prison, with all of that time suspended.

The detective wanted to search the woman's apartment for possible evidence to use against her in connection with the crime of identity theft. In particular, he hoped to find any and all computers she had, plus electronic storage devices and any papers or documents containing the personal information of the three victims — or any other potential victims.

Police executed the warrant Jan. 18 and seized: two desktop computers and a laptop, a Sony memory stick, a list of passwords, miscellaneous notes, a Best Buy gift card, a Phillips media player, information about specific people, two wallets, the contents of a shredder and a "wish list" from a purse.

On Jan. 25, police arrested Arellano and charged her with three counts of identity theft. She was released from the Adult Detention Center the same day on $10,500 bond and has a March 9 court date.