Strippers in Connection with Credit Card Scam Face Federal Charges

Criminal Ring of Adult Entertainers Face Federal Charges for Credit Card Theft

credit card scamFederal authorities arrested four women in connection with a scam ring made up of adult entertainers in New York City, who stole credit card information, drugged their clients, and ran up extravagant bills. The women face several federal charges, including grand larceny and conspiracy.

Samantha Barbash, 40, Roselyn Keo, 29, Marsi Rosen, 28, and Karina Pascucci, 26, were four of the ringleaders involved in the credit card scam. Barbash, Keo, and Rosen were arraigned on Tuesday and face federal charges of conspiracy, grand larceny, and forgery for the scam, which investigators say was operated between September and December of last year.

Reportedly, the scam involved the strippers meeting wealthy male victims outside of strip clubs where they worked, slipping the men drugs such as Molly or ketamine, taking them to private clubs at other strip clubs, then taking their credit cards. The women allegedly discussed how much money they could reasonably charge on the victim’s cards, then Barbash, as the ringleader, “would forge the victims’ signatures on credit card receipts and other documents,” according to the indictment.

After being drugged, the men would wake up in cars, hotel rooms, or sometimes their own beds with no memory of what happened. Some of them contested the charges with their credit card companies, at which point the scammers reportedly sent the victim threatening text messages, including compromising photographs they had taken.

“The defendants were banking on the victims being too afraid to contact the police,” said Special Narcotics Prosecutor Bridget Brennan. “They made a serious miscalculation.”

One of the scammers’ victims was Zyad Younan, a cardiologist at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. Several people filed lawsuits against Younan earlier this year, alleging that the doctor stiffed strip clubs he attended of at least $135,303 during numerous visits. One club said that Younan had been seen “partying with five girls at a time.” Younan denied both the credit card and legal charges.

Younan’s lawyer, Michael Weinstein of Cole Schotz, said, “We were always confident that law enforcement’s efforts would expose that my client was preyed upon by this ring and not responsible for charges to his credit card.”

Carmine Vitolo, a manager at Flushing Club Roadhouse in NYC, will be arraigned on Wednesday, June 11th, along with Pascucci, on federal charges.

The Strom Law Firm Can Help with Felony Theft, Wire Fraud, Grand Larceny, and Other Federal Charges

Our federal criminal defense lawyers handle cases involving:

  • Fraudulent insurance claims
  • Bond issuances and investment schemes
  • Falsifying loan applications
  • Check fraud schemes
  • Bribes or kickbacks
  • False advertising or misrepresentation in sales transactions
  • making a false statement to a loan officer or bank official
  • deceiving a bank
  • falsifying loan documents
  • check fraud
  • forging check signatures
  • ATM fraud
  • Embezzlement

And other federal charges.

The Strom Law Firm, LLC has the experience that you need to defend your federal charges, whether you are charged with felony theft, grand larceny, embezzlement, kickbacks, or murder-for-hire.  Founded by former U.S. Attorney and assistant solicitor, Pete Strom, our experienced criminal defense attorneys include a former public defender, and a former Assistant Attorney General and Richland County Assistant Solicitor, as well as a tax lawyer familiar with IRS investigations.  Our experience and familiarity with prosecutorial techniques provide the basis for experienced and effective legal representation. We will fight hard to have your charges reduced, or even dismissed. Contact us today for a free consultation to discuss the facts of your case as well the most effective way to proceed with your case. 803.2523.4800

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