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Retail employee arrested for fraud

By Staff | Jul 10, 2012

A retail employee has been charged with multiple counts of fraud after he reportedly used stolen credit cards at several locations in Cape Coral and North Fort Myers.

Emmanuel Joseph, 55, of Lehigh Acres, was charged with fraud-illegal use of credit card, petit theft $100 less than $300, fraud-impersonate use/possess ID of another without consent, fraud swindle obtain property under $20,000 and grand theft $300 less than $5,000.

The investigation began Nov. 11, 2011 after the Lee County Sheriff Office responded to a compliant in reference to a credit card fraud. The victim advised that she and her mother were shopping at the Wal-Mart in North Fort Myers on Pine Island Road. The victim said she placed her purse in the shopping cart and left it while she assisted a person in a wheelchair. The purse turned up missing after that. The victim did not notice the purse was missing until later in the day. The case was subsequently assigned to Economic Crimes Unit.

On May 21, detectives with the Lee County Sheriffs Office Economic Crimes Unit were assigned to investigate a case where a victim’s wallet had been stolen from a motorized shopping cart while the victim was shopping at the Wal-Mart located at 545 Pine Island Road. The investigation revealed a Wal-Mart employee, Emmanuel Joseph who brings the shopping carts in from the parking lot, had fraudulently used the victim’s credit cards at several businesses in North Fort Myers and Cape Coral including the Wal-Mart on Del Prado Boulevard.

Joseph was identified in a photo line up that was presented to the cashiers who had conducted the transactions.

It was learned during the investigation Joseph was a suspect in the similar case that occurred in November

Joseph was placed under arrest on June 6. He gave numerous stories as to why he had used the victims’ credit cards and ultimately admitted to committing the crimes, officials said.

Joseph was transported to the Lee County Jail. He posted bond and has been released.