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Sheriff Searches For Identity Thief

Madera County — Sheriff John Anderson just learned this morning that Corey James Sahagian, 33, of Fresno, one of Central California’s most prolific identity thieves, may be hiding out in Madera County.

Corey James Sahagian is wanted on a federal no bail warrant, and he is this week’s Fugitive Friday’s most wanted person.

Sahagian, who also goes by the names Corey James Smith and Corey James Sahagian-Smith, has brown hair, blue eyes, weighs about 180 lbs. and stands 6 feet tall.

Sahagian is believed to be part of an identity theft ring that has preyed on both Fresno and Madera Counties. Just last month he was featured in Valley Crime Stoppers.

Two years ago he was named Madera County’s Most Wanted when deputies discovered a stolen credit card had been used to rent a hotel room in Oakhurst.

On the morning of Monday, July 9, 2012, a man later identified as Sahagian reportedly used a stolen credit card to check into the hotel located off Highway 41.

He had a female companion, who was described a as being in her mid-30s, dark skinned, with a medium build, and standing roughly 5′ 7″ tall. She had short dark hair with tattoos on her arms.

At around 6:30 a.m. heavy foot traffic could be heard coming and going. Two males were spotted delivering property to the hotel room. The same two males were also seen driving in an older model black truck.

The driver of that truck was described as a white male in his mid-30s. He sported a blonde crew cut and wore a red shirt. Two little girls were seen with the driver. The other occupant was described as having a beard.

The hotel clerk learned the credit card was stolen when the victim, who resides in Maryland, called the hotel, questioning the charge.

More purchases were made with that same card at a gas station and a donut shop.

When deputies arrived at the hotel, no one was in the room. They were, however, able to secure a search warrant, seizing property that included three laptops, one printer, one scanner, a bag containing hundreds of credit card numbers, a Magstripe reader and a fixed blade knife.

During their search, detectives discovered evidence of more than two dozen identity theft victims, many of whom either lived or worked in Fresno County.

Anyone with information about Corey James Sahagian (aka Corey Smith), is urged to call either the Madera County Sheriff’s Office at 559-675-7770 or CRIME STOPPERS at 559-498-STOP. You can also email a tip to tips@valleycrimestoppers.org or submit a tip online at https://www.tipsubmit.com/WebTips.aspx?AgencyID=548

Your tip to Crime Stoppers could be worth up $1,000.

You can remain anonymous.

You can follow the Sheriff’s latest posts and information on both Facebook facebook.com/MaderaSheriff and Twitter: twitter.com/MaderaSheriff

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