Death Benefits Scam Leads to Arrest

by | Aug 9, 2012

Last October a family member came to me with a suspicious looking ‘membership application’ and benefits description for an organization called the “Concerned Members Committee.”

Her parents had been paying into this organization every month for years. The benefits information claimed that, upon death, the member’s family would receive a death benefit based on the number of years they had been a member of the organization.

Since one of her parents was very ill, she wanted me to look into the organization and how a claim was supposed to be made in the event of the death of a member. We both thought that the entire operation looked a suspiciously like a scam, but we needed to be sure.

I initially sent out a letter requesting claims and benefits information from the organization. No response. I called their listed number. No response. I faxed their fax machine number. More crickets.

So we then began to make complaints to the appropriate state agencies and the San Jose Police Department.

On Thursday, August 9, 2012, Mr Davie Bah Ngo was arraigned on charges of grand theft, money laundering, and check fraud.

The NBC News Investigative Team did a story on the scam and were kind enough to include an interview with me.

If you or a family member were victimized by this scam, please contact the District Attorney’s investigator, Bob Traskowski, at (408)792-2938 or

I have heard that, following the NBC News story, over 2000 people contacted the San Jose Police Department Financial Crimes Unit to add to the complaints regarding Mr. Ngo.

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