Man who pretended to be dentists to steal $2M sentenced

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A man in California who, along with two others, reportedly stole the identities of about a dozen dentists to defraud banks out of nearly $2 million was sentenced, according to a story published on June 5 by My News LA.

Artin Sarkissians, who with accomplices Ararat Yesayan and Varooj Arakelian, used the stolen identities of clinicians to open sham dental offices and fraudulent lines of credit, was sentenced on June 5 to the time he had already served in prison. Additionally, the 47-year-old, who pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud, was ordered to pay a share of more than $2 million in restitution, according to the story.

Between 2010 and 2014, Sarkissians, Yesayan, and Arakelian, all of Glendale, CA, were accused of posing as dentists by stealing their personal information, including dental license numbers, and buying commercial office space to open what appeared to be dental practices in the names of their victims.

The men reportedly submitted change of address requests to the state dental board for the fake practices so they could intercept mail intended for their victims. Also, Sarkissians and his accomplices purportedly used the dentists' information to apply for lines of credit. They then used the funds to submit multiple fraudulent dental claims for procedures that were never performed on nonexistent patients.

Once the claims were approved, money was wired to bank accounts that were controlled by Yesayan. The scheme defrauded banks of about $2.1 million.

In March 2020, Yesayan was sentenced to 37 months in prison and ordered to pay his part of the $2 million in restitution. In May 2019, the 39-year-old man pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud. Arakelian, 54, also pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 24 months in prison and ordered to pay part of the restitution.

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