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Tilkin: Blazers Owner Paul Allen's Identity Thief Will Plead Guilty

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A Pennsylvania man was accused of stealing Portland Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen's identity plans to plead guilty.

Steve Dykes-US PRESSWIRE

Back in March 2012, a Pennsylvania man was accused of stealing Portland Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen's identity.

An AWOL soldier's simple scheme to defraud one of the richest men in the world has landed him in federal custody, according to a criminal complaint. In the complaint unsealed Monday, federal investigators allege Brandon Lee Price changed the address on a bank account held by billionaire Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, then had a debit card sent to his Pittsburgh home so he could use it for payments on a delinquent Armed Forces Bank account and personal expenses.

This week, Dan Tilkin of KATU.com writes that Price will plead guilty to four counts of bank fraud.

FBI investigators said last year Price managed to change the address on Allen's bank account to an address in Pittsburgh, where he lived with his mother. He then called Citibank a few days later and said he lost his debit card, investigators said. The bank mailed him a replacement card for Allen's account.

The FBI said Price went to a video game store and spent $278.18 and later rang up a second transaction for just a buck at a dollar store.That was just the appetizer, though. The FBI said Price then tried to pay off part of his personal loans through Armed Forces Bank and make a $15,000 wire transfer.

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In a statement after Price's 2012 arrest, a spokesman for Allen said "while the financial loss here was small, I'm sure the feeling of being a victim of identity theft is unsettling no matter how much money you've lost."

Price faces the possibility of extended jail time and large fines.

Investigators said that they knew something was up because you can't buy rare giraffe bones at a dollar store.

Note: Sorry for the delay on this one. It got lost in the Rookie of the Year shuffle.

-- Ben Golliver | benjamin.golliver@gmail.com | Twitter