View Full Version : Authorities charge (black) couple with running fake sweepstakes

The Bobster
03-09-2017, 06:06 AM

Authorities charge couple with running fake sweepstakes
By Rebecca Rosenberg
March 8, 2017 | 10:22pm | Updated

Ricardo Castang and Linda Altidor
Steven Hirsch

A husband-and-wife team ran a fake sweepstakes that duped dozens of victims into handing over some $300,000, authorities said Wednesday.

Ricardo Castang, 35, and Linda Altidor, 30, of Brooklyn, called people in 17 states and told them they were sweepstakes winners, according to city Special Narcotics Prosecutor Bridget G. Brennan.

Officials uncovered the scheme while investigating Castang for cocaine trafficking. :rolleyes:

The defendants, who claimed to work for Publishers Clearing House, told the victims that before they could collect their windfall they had to send a check for fees and taxes, officials said.

More than 24 of the mostly elderly victims took the bait during the scheme that began March 2015, Brennan said. One victim sent $60,000 to the defendants’ home address. :eek:

Altidor, who works for a law office :rolleyes:, sobbed and looked up at the ceiling at her arraignment in Manhattan Supreme Court. She was held on $10,000 bail.

Officials uncovered the scheme while investigating Castang for a cocaine-trafficking operation. He allegedly had packages of cocaine mailed from Costa Rica to addresses in New York.

Investigators intercepted two shipments sent to a Crown Heights shoe store containing a kilo of cocaine stitched into the lining of souvenir bags with “Costa Rica” written on the sides.

Castang and Altidor face charges of scheming to defraud and money laundering. Castang, who is to be arraigned Thursday, is also charged with conspiracy and attempted possession of a controlled substance.