CENTRAL ISLIP - A Commack man is accused of stealing more than $225,000 in an identity theft scam to fuel a heroin and gambling addiction.
Detectives say between July and November 2015, 44-year-old Michael Katcher used access to his friend's company, Alpine Limousines, to steal customers' credit card information to conduct fraudulent transactions.
He allegedly used the information of his 21-year-old daughter and his friend to open numerous fraudulent business accounts and credit cards.
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Police say the fraudulent limousine companies Katcher created include TAK Transportation, Charmwood and McKewens Limousine.
Authorities say Katcher was supporting a $2,000 a week heroin habit and a $100,000 a year gambling habit.
Katcher's court-appointed attorney Robert Curran claims there is no evidence drugs played a role in his alleged crimes and that the family is trying to raise the $25,000 bail.
Katcher is also being sued by numerous victims throughout Long Island and New York City for allegedly stealing more than $650,000 in a similar scheme.
Police are asking anyone who has used Alpine Limousine services to check their bank statements for fraudulent charges.
Katcher is due back in court Feb. 1.