February 22, 2019
New Jersey Resident Charged in Household Goods Moving Fraud Scheme
On February 22, 2019, Farah Al-Ibrahim, a.k.a. Farah Alhomsi, of Bloomfield, New Jersey, was charged by information in U.S. District Court, Newark, New Jersey, with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The charges relate to her role in a household goods moving fraud conspiracy involving hundreds of moves. She pleaded guilty on the same day.
Al-Ibrahim was a sales manager and bookkeeper for a number of moving companies (the Target Companies) located in northern New Jersey. Al-Ibrahim and her co-conspirators jointly controlled and operated the Target Companies, which were separate legal entities, by sharing bank accounts, post office boxes, employees, and an office space. The co-conspirators quoted customers “low ball” price estimates for moving household goods, and then raised prices after the goods were loaded on trucks, and the customers were in vulnerable positions. Between 2013 and 2015, the Target Companies handled approximately 1,500 moves; the final costs of over 1,300 of those moves were above the permissible 10-percent increase allowed by Federal regulations. To avoid detection by law enforcement, Al-Ibrahim and her co-conspirators created the various moving companies and registered them with fictitious owners and addresses. When customers made complaints against one Target Company, the co-conspirators shut it down and created a new one.
DOT-OIG is conducting this investigation with the Department of Homeland Security–Homeland Security Investigations (DHS-HSI) and U.S. Postal Inspection Service.
Note: Indictments, informations, and criminal complaints are only accusations by the Government. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.