One of the little discussed, but very serious aspects of identity theft occurs when your identity is stolen by someone who then commits a crime using your name. A recent incident involving Vancouver Chess Master John Yoos illustrates this problem. Yoos was surprised to learn that someone with the same name as him was charged with attempted murder in New York City. Upon further investigation he found that the accused not only had the same name, but the same birth date. Eventually, he discovered that it was not a coincidence, but rather the accused was someone he had met ten years earlier who had stolen Yoos’ identity. The Manhattan District Attorney’s office cooperated with the real John Yoos in clearing his name, but others have not been so lucky and actually have been arrested, acquired criminal records and had tremendous difficulty clearing their names.
If you find that someone has committed crimes with your stolen identity, clear the matter up as quickly as possible with the District Attorney and then get a letter from the DA that you can carry with you at all times so that if you are stopped by a law enforcement officer, such as for a simple automobile violation, you will be able to show that you are not a criminal although such information may still, in some instances, come back to appear on your record.