EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – After an 18-month investigation, El Paso Police say they have arrested five people in connection to an organized fraud ring, including a former candidate for city council.
Investigators say Kizito Ekechukwu, Natalie de la Rosa, Chidindu Obioha, Benita Pargas, and Sebastian Baca are all facing charges related to the crime.
Police tell us the group is accused of working together to open up multiple bank accounts then report the debit cards associated with those accounts either lost or stolen and then pocket the charge reimbursements, totaling more than $25,000.
Police say they are still looking for 3 other suspects:
- Ikenna Eke of Midland.
- Gary Carrington of El Paso.
- Shanique Thornton of Georgia.
KTSM previously reported Kizito Ekechukwu, one of the suspects arrested, ran last year for the city council seat that represents Far East El Paso.
He is scheduled to appear in court tomorrow after being accused of assaulting a family member last summer.
He released a statement responding to the bank fraud case saying he is surprised and disappointed by the allegations against him and his fiance, though it’s unclear which of the other suspects is his fiance.
The statement reads in part:
“One of the main reasons that my family immigrated to this country was to escape corruption that was rampant where we came from,” the statement said. “I look forward to having my day in court where I am confident that I will be cleared of these allegations.”