Ex-NFL participant Kenbrell Thompkins responsible of id theft, COVID-19 auxiliary fraud


MIAMI – A retired NFL wide receiver and native of South Florida pleaded guilty to stealing identities in order to fraudulently obtain coronavirus-related unemployment insurance benefits in California.

Kenbrell Armod Thompkins, 33, pleaded guilty in federal court in Miami Monday to fraud involving unauthorized access devices and one-time grievous identity theft, according to court records. He faces up to 12 years in prison if he is scheduled to be sentenced on January 6th.

According to a consent form, Thompkins used the stolen identities of numerous Florida residents to obtain fraudulent California unemployment insurance benefits. California distributed those unemployment benefits as debit cards sent to Thompkins addresses in Miami and nearby Aventura, prosecutors said.

In August and September 2020, Thompkins used these debit cards to withdraw money from various ATMs in Miami-Dade County, prosecutors said. They said the program included about $ 300,000 in California unemployment insurance funds, of which about $ 230,000 was withdrawn.

Thompkins was signed to the New England Patriots as an undrafted free agent in 2013 and was also a member of the Oakland Raiders and New York Jets.

Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act last year to help individuals and businesses survive the COVID-19 pandemic financially, including by providing federal funding for state unemployment insurance programs.