$200 K Employee Theft
EAST MONTGOMERY COUNTY, November 27, 2013 - A Pakistani-born Houston resident is in the Montgomery County Jail after an investigation revealed he was stealing large sums of money from his employer, some of which was then sent to Pakistan.
Last Thursday, the owners of New Caney Recycling contacted the Precinct 4 Constable’s Office regarding a possible employee theft of approximately $200,000.
New Caney Recycling, located at 21227 US 59 in New Caney, profits by purchasing small amounts of scrap metal from a large customer base and later selling the accumulated metal to a larger scrap metal company at a higher cost. While their records indicated they had purchased a significantly larger amount of scrap metal than usual, their inventory of metal on-site revealed a tremendous shortage by comparison.
A review of the business’s video surveillance footage showed one employee engaging in suspicious activity that did not follow their established protocol. Closer scrutiny of the footage further implicated the employee.
On Friday, members of the Precinct 4 Constable’s Office conducted a preliminary investigation and reviewed the surveillance video. They determined the employee was using ID’s from actual customers to create tickets indicating additional metal was purchased from those persons. However, there was no additional metal and he kept the money.
On Saturday, the third day of the investigation, deputies obtained an arrest warrant for Shabbir Hussain, the employee implicated in the video. Hussain cooperated with investigators, readily confessing to the theft. He said he spent some of the money, deposited some in multiple U.S. bank accounts, and transferred $90,000 to $100,000 of U.S. currency to Pakistan.
Investigators went to Hussain’s residence on Lawson’s Creek Lane in Houston where they discovered around $3,000 in cash and multiple valuables including jewelry and electronics he admitted having purchased with the stolen money. Hussain’s wife apparently had no knowledge of her husband’s crimes and was under the impression he won a lottery jackpot earlier this year. She cooperated with investigators and voluntarily surrendered about $10,000 worth of jewelry Hussain purchased for her over the last several months.
On Tuesday, Hussain wore handcuffs and shackles as he accompanied investigators to one Houston bank where he had additional cash in a safety deposit box and another bank where he had deposited cash into an account.
In the coming days, Pct. 4 investigators will contact the New Caney Salvage customers whose identification was used by Hussain to steal from the business. They will be seeking complaints from victims so they can charge Hussain with between 50 and 100 counts of first-degree felony Fraudulent Use or Possession of Personal Identifying Information.
Pct. 4 Constable Kenneth “Rowdy” Hayden said he was pleased with the speed and precision of the investigation.
“I’m proud that our agency was able to recover some of the stolen money stolen and also, merchandise purchased with the stolen money,” Constable Hayden said. “I believe if our investigators had not taken the initiative and expedited the process, it would have resulted in an even greater loss for this local business.”
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