On Monday, 22-year-old Jocelyn Kirsch, a former Drexel University student, pleaded guilty to six counts of criminal activity - all of which were committed with collaboration from '05 Penn alumnus Edward Anderton.
Anderton also pleaded guilty last month to the same six counts, which include money laundering and identity theft.
U.S. Attorney Louis Lappen read aloud the plea agreement that the defense - led by Philadelphia attorney Ronald Greenblatt - and the prosecution entered into after Kirsch changed her plea. The agreement included her actual guilty plea, several fines and a term of imprisonment to be decided by the government.
Kirsch waved the right to an indictment, declining the opportunity to appear before a grand jury.
She also disclosed that before and during her time in prison, she was seeing a psychiatrist and being treated with therapy and medication. Still, Judge Eduardo Robreno, requested that a psychiatric evaluation be performed prior to sentencing.
From Sept. 2006 until Nov. 2007, Kirsch and Anderton engaged in an "extensive identity theft scheme," said Lappen. This involved actual losses to date of approximately $116,000 and additional intended losses of at least $122,000. Among their numerous victims were friends, coworkers and students.
After their arrest in Dec. 2007, Philadelphia police investigated and uncovered "piles of evidence" that established their involvement, including identification-making equipment, fake photo identification and keys, said Lappen.
Prosecutors also said Kirsch continued to engage in identity theft activities while awaiting court appearances in Pennsylvania.
After ensuring her full understanding regarding the nature of the charges and potential penalties, Kirsch was asked for her plea and spoke clearly -- "guilty".
Kirsch's minimum sentence is two years in prison, along with criminal fines and special assessments. However, Lappen said that her sentence will likely be longer than the minimum time length.
While Kirsch will have an opportunity to speak before the court during her sentencing hearing, Robreno also offered her such an opportunity in court on Monday, but she declined to make any comments.
Kirsch's sentencing hearing is set for Oct. 17. Anderson's sentencing date is Sept. 19.Comments powered by Disqus
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