Four women allegedly stole hundreds of identities, according to Ramsey County charges

  • Article by: CHAO XIONG , Star Tribune
  • Updated: September 7, 2013 - 8:09 AM

355 different identities found at former state employee’s St. Paul home.

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Four women have been charged in Ramsey County District Court in an identity theft scam. They are, clockwise from top left, Shauntell R. Burg, Kristin R. Warren, Andrea L. Gunderson and Roxanne K. Deflorin

Roxanne K. Deflorin worked for a decade as an administrative clerk at the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry, where she had access to workers’ compensation files that contained sensitive information.

It was there, authorities believe, that Deflorin accessed private data on her work computer that contributed to a large-scale theft from several sources of identities and Social Security numbers. The victims included “hundreds of hardworking employees and retirees,” Ramsey County Attorney John Choi said in a written statement.

Authorities believe Deflorin traded that information for drugs.

Deflorin and three other women have been charged in Ramsey County District Court in connection with the alleged theft of between 350 and 500 identities.

According to the complaint: Deflorin obtained identities and Social Security numbers from the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry (DLI) where she worked from October 1994 to September 2004, and from going through trash.

In August 2012, authorities found 355 different identities at her home in the 700 block of Thomas Avenue in St. Paul, including 269 members of the Public Employees Retirement Association of Minnesota (PERA), the charges said. Eight identities were from workers’ compensation claims from the DLI database.

DLI spokesman James Honerman said that before she resigned in 2004, Deflorin had access to the department’s workers’ compensation files.

Starting in 2008, the department began assigning identification numbers instead, although the switch-over is not complete.

“We’re trying to move that way, but it’s a huge process,” Honerman said.

Deflorin, 49, faces one count of identity theft and two counts of possession of a short-barreled shotgun.

Also charged were:

• Kristin R. Warren, 40, of St. Paul, one count of identity theft.

• Shauntell R. Burg, 32, of St. Paul, two counts of identity theft.

• Andrea L. Gunderson, 30, address unknown, two counts of identity theft.

If the women are convicted, they face up to 20 years in prison and/or a $100,000 fine on the identity theft counts.

Police informed the department this March that it could contact victims identified through DLI documents. A DLI letter informed victims that information they filed between 1990 and 2003 had allegedly been stolen by Deflorin.

Ramsey County Sheriff’s Inspector Rob Allen said that victims came from multiple sources, and that many identities are still being verified by authorities.

  • Might you be a victim?

    The Ramsey County Attorney’s Office Victim Witness Division set up a website, phone line and e-mail address to help people who believe they may be victims of the suspects and for general information about protection against identity theft.

    • www.IDTheftCase.org

    • RCAOvictiminput@co.ramsey.mn.us

    • Victims can call: 651-266-2748 or 651-266-3364.

    • General tips: bit.ly/19q5ojt

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