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April 12, 2018 -- -- Westchester County District Attorney Anthony A. Scarpino, Jr. announced that Andre Mendez (DOB 05/25/91) of Nanuet, New York was arraigned Wednesday before Westchester County Court Judge Larry J. Schwartz on a 30-count indictment involving car theft and identity theft.

He is charged with the following felonies:

  • Two counts of Identity Theft in the First Degree: assume another’s identity, obtain goods worth greater than $2,000.00, a class D felony
  • Two counts of Identity Theft in the First Degree, assume another’s identity: commits or attempts to commit a class D felony or higher crime, a class D felony
  • Two counts of Grand Larceny in the Third Degree: property value exceeds $3,000.00, a class D felony
  • Four counts of Falsifying Business Records in the First Degree, a class E felony
  • One count of Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree: obtain property greater than $1,000 from one or more persons, a class E felony

Bail was set at $125,000 and the defendant must surrender his passport. The next court appearance is scheduled for April 25, 2018.

Background:
The defendant, Andre Mendez, is alleged to have created a synthetic (false) identity using his actual name and date of birth along with the Social Security number of an unsuspecting 10-year-old victim. He then opened two Bank of America bank accounts to establish credit with that identity. Investigators believe that Mendez was able to use the child’s Social Security number because banks and credit agencies had no record of that number, and therefore, were not aware the number identified a child.

Once these bank accounts were established, Mendez leased or financed motor vehicles using the same synthetic identity which now could sustain a credit check.

On Feb. 1, 2017, the defendant financed a 2017 Toyota Camry SE from Westchester Toyota in Yonkers giving the victim child’s Social Security number as his own. The following day, he leased a 2017 Honda Accord Sport from White Plains Honda in White Plains using the same synthetic identity. In support of both of these purchases, Mendez provided the dealerships with forged ADP Earning Statements purported to be issued by a hospital for which he did not work.

Mendez made no payments toward either of these vehicles. He had been driving both cars although his license was revoked and insurance lapsed.

This investigation began in May 2017 and culminated in the defendant’s arrest Sept. 8, 2017, as he left the Town of Greenburgh Court driving the fraudulently purchased Toyota. He had appeared in that court on charges of Aggravated Unlicensed Operation in the First Degree and Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated stemming from a March 26, 2017 incident.

After Mendez’s arrest, District Attorney’s Office investigators recovered the stolen and fraudulently purchased Honda Accord at an auto body shop in the Bronx. Mendez also has a pending Driving While Intoxicated case outstanding in the City of Yonkers.

This investigation was carried out by investigators from the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office and the case is being prosecuted by ADA Stefanie DeNise.

Andre Mendez

Andre Mendez

In compliance with the Rules of Professional Conduct, Rule 3.6, you are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

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Media contact: Helen Jonsen
111 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.
White Plains, NY 10601
Tel: (914) 995-3586
Fax: (914) 995-2116