Massive raid in Downtown Crossing after man arrested on charges he ran a stolen-property, ID theft and counterfeiting operation

Downtown Crossing store taped offDowntown Crossing store taped off. Photo by Kim Janey.

Large numbers of Boston cops , state troopers and Secret Service agents swarmed Time Products, 449 Washington St. this afternoon as they arrested the alleged mastermind of a ring dealing in stolen phones and fake cash, credit cards and identities.

The raid came after State Police arrested Shahab "David" Yousheei, 36, of Brighton, on the Common after he allegedly purchased counterfeit money from an undercover trooper, the state Attorney General's office reports:

Based at a kiosk at 449 Washington St. in Downtown Crossing, Yousheei allegedly led an extensive identity theft scheme in which he used false identities to open mobile phone accounts, obtain smart phones and other high end electronics at discounted prices available to new account holders, and then sold those goods at higher prices.

In another scheme, he used stolen identities to create credit cards, used those credit cards to purchase gift cards, and ultimately sold merchandise purchased with those gift cards for a profit. He also used the fraudulent credit cards to buy high-end electronics outright. Finally, Yousheei allegedly accepted and bought counterfeit money in furtherance of his schemes.

Yousheei is expected to be arraigned tomorrow in Boston Municipal Court on a variety of charges, including identity theft, illegal possession of a credit-card encorder, falsely making credit cards, using fraudulent credit cards and possession of counterfeit money, the AG's office says.

According to investigators, Yousheei led a large group of "runners" that carried out an elaborate operation to use stolen identities to open new mobile phone accounts. They used the fraudulent accounts to obtain high-end electronics and smart phones.

Using the fraudulent accounts, the group purchased high end smart phones at discounted prices made available for new account holders. When contacted by law enforcement, those victims whose identities were stolen had no knowledge of either the new accounts or the smart phones being purchased under their name.

Yousheei also allegedly provided an illegal credit card encoder to his associates that in turn used fake or stolen identities to make credit cards. The associates then used the fraudulent credit cards to allegedly buy thousands of dollars of electronic merchandise of mostly Apple products, including iPads and laptop computers as well as gift cards. Investigators believe that the merchandise and cell phones may have been sold at Yousheei's kiosk or possibly, overseas.

In 2010, Boston Police set up a bogus jewelry stand at a similar storefront down the street as part of a sting operation that resulted in 24 arrests.

Innocent, etc.

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Comments

Unrelated to this

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Some crazy guy was flopping around on the ground cursing at two MBTA officers by the Lamberts stand!

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About time

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Stolen goods galore...

Let me get this straight

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Fences for stolen jewelry and electronics on every corner----OK

Vending carts for sunglasses and hot dogs-------------------Not OK

Got it.

You are correct,sir

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what's the problem?

*sarcasm off*

Seriously, EVERYBODY knew what was going on in DTX, including my elderly grandma. This 'sting' sure was a long time coming.

And what about the other fences, especially the big one on Winter St.?

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Yes, indoors

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There are two or three places like that on Washington Street, where the "stores" are actually more like very tiny little malls.

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My parents got engaged and

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My parents got engaged and got moms engagement ring at a store on Washington St as well. I took her through there one day a couple of years ago and as we were cutting down Winter St and it was sad for her to see what this area has become.

Who would give any of these merchants a debit or credit card? yikes..

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no cars = more crime

Banning cars from the streets of downtown crossing put the Lafayette mall and many stores out of business. Sketchy people and crime abounds. Newbury street doesn't ban cars, has many shops, and the crime is boutique prices. So, yeah, banning cars from places has really made a change, great job.

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Washington Street vs Downtown Crossing

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People who did not live in Boston back when Downtown Crossing was plain old Washington Street may not understand, but there is an ABSOLUTE correlation from when they banned cars there in the late 70s, to the long decline of a once vibrant urban shopping area to the sad Downtown Crossing as we now know it. And it really has nothing much to do with the fact that you once could physically drive and park there (good luck finding a parking space even then). It is the fact that they tried to turn a very vital, downtown urban, snarling shopping area into some sort of idealized suburban pedestrian walking mall, and there is simply NO WAY it could work in that location. They installed many benches, all of which were subsequently removed. And remember that glass awning canopy thing they put up on much of one side of the street, including right in front of where the sketchy jewelry store is, to try to "upscale" things? That's also gone.

It is apples and oranges to compare Washington Street/DTX to Faneuil Hall. No one from Boston actually uses Faneuil Hall as a practical downtown shopping district as they did with Washington Street/DTX. That's not what it's meant for.

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Well as someone else pointed out

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Correlation is not causation. A whole heck of lot of bad things happened to American cities like Boston in the 70s and 80s. And this was in parallel with the rise of the suburban shopping mall. And you're right that trying to turn an urban downtown shopping area into a suburban mall isn't the best approach.

I'm generally not a fan of full pedestrianization of streets, except in limited cases. I prefer shared streets.

But think for a moment about this place. What exactly would you gain by being able to drive in what is now DTX? You wouldn't be able to move very fast. Especially on Winter Street. It's crowded. You wouldn't be able to park on the street. Maybe you could enter a parking garage entrance if one were built there. But you could do that on another street too.

Pretty much every time I visit DTX I'm impressed by the number of people there. I don't see it "dying" at all. It's thriving despite the problems with retail. I can only see it getting busier as things get fixed. The crowds there already would overwhelm any possible paltry sidewalks, so if it were opened to traffic, it would have to be in the form of shared streets.

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Sorry, was in a trolling mood to prompt discussion

There are successful pedestrian shopping areas. They are called shopping malls, and usually indoors. The thing they need is road access and affordable parking to succeed - MBTA access alone is not enough.

If you can't afford a car, then places like DTX are fine. People who can afford cars, but can't drive/park easily won't be there in significant numbers, so a place ends up a ghetto dominated by lower income people. This discovery led to changing from all poor public housing developments to mixed income developments and Section 8 rent vouchers. A mix stems decline.

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Dicussion?

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You have no interest in that.

Your only interest is promoting your views that Boston should be razed and paved over so you can drive in circles.

Move to Texas where you'll have nothing to bitch about. They don't have poverty or any "ghetto" areas where rich people work and spend money without driving cars.

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Mission Accomplished

If your intent was to prompt discussion of how divorced from reality your posts are, consider yourself successful.

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You're not thinking big

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You're not thinking big enough. Wait till you hear about this magic rock I have that keeps tigers crime away.

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Downtown

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Downtown boston is in shambles now, So many sketchy people, So many fronts to fence stolen items, sometime i forgot if im downtown or dudley square.

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Cars were allowed on Washington and Winter until DTX was created

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I remember well as a child going down to Washington St [not Downtown Crossing] with my mom. The streets with cars were no big deal. And of course the place was booming with every type of store, half dozen 'department' stores, biggest Woolworths in the world, army navy stores, upscale jewelers, cafes, everything. Today it's a sad,depressing ghetto style place compared to it's former glory. How it was allowed to degrade to what it's become is puzzling. City Hall appears to have actually aided in it's demise, rather than prevent it or turn it around. A neighborhood that has a huge business day population of office workers, and of course tourists, and easy access by train for many people living in surrounding densely populated areas especially students, should be an ideal location and booming.

Shopping at Jordans, Filenes

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Shopping at Jordans, Filenes and Gilchrist (?), lunch at Dini's and Ice Cream at Baileys. Those were the days mom would just drive into town as soon as dad got home with the car and she would park right in front of Filene's or Jordans. Many times by herself after dark, it was a very safe neighborhood. My daughter lived on Tremont for a couple of years not long ago, she hated going to Macy's even in the day time. She would be met with all kinds of verbal "compliments" by guys hanging around, it was rather unpleasant for her. The place is a dump now and it was turning dumpy even before the Filenes hole in the ground.

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Now I'm really sad

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Seeing the words Woolworths and Baileys brings back so many childhood memories. Remember how the hot fudge would spill over the top of the sundae onto the saucer below it?

My grandma used to take us in there when we were little kids. And now I'm sad about Ashmont because that's where her house was and we'd take the Red Line from Ashmont to Washington Station (you kids today call it Downtown Crossing) and go to Baileys.

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Correlation is not Causation

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Downtown crossing used to be prosperous.
Downtown crossing used to have cars.

Downtown crossing is no longer prosperous.
Downtown crossing no longer has cars.

You might, possibly, by some stretch, be able to make the argument that getting rid of the cars led to an economic decline... except for the fact that Main Streets everywhere suffered an awful decline during the same period, and 99.99% of them did not eliminate cars. In fact, you could use the same data to show that getting rid of the cars kept downtown crossing somewhat more alive than it would have otherwise been. In either case, you'd be blowing smoke.

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Global warming is like that

Just because the earth is warming and fossil fuel use has skyrocketed in the last 200 years doesn't prove a causal relationship. Its just blowing smoke!

Aside from examples, I agree the planet is warming. I just think its not possible to change and throwing lots of money at it trying, is a futile waste.

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Don't you listen to them Markk

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You keep going..this late at night after a couple of fattys, your posts are da bomb! Of course you'd have to be high to make any sense of them, but I digress.....

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