10/31/2012 01:40 EDT | Updated 12/31/2012 05:12 EST

Three Quebecers Charged With Identity Fraud Spree In Lethbridge, Calgary

LETHBRIDGE, Alta. - Police in Alberta have charged three people from Quebec with a province wide fraud scheme.

Lethbridge police arrested two men and a woman at a city bank last Thursday after an employee became suspicious.

Investigators allege the trio had hacked computers to steal identification documents then travelled west to impersonate Albertans and steal their money.

More than $88,000 was stolen using forged bank cards at banks and loan companies in Lethbridge, Calgary and four other communities in southern Alberta.

The offences date back to late September.

Sgt. Christy Woods said Wednesday that it's an intricate scam that has hit Alberta before.

"We can't say it's directly related to organized crime but we can say it is an organized group."

She said group members travel with various fake IDs made for them with several different names. "They're flown to certain cities and they disperse in groups and they do this in a calculated manner."

Charged are 27-year-old Johnson Egalite of Laval and Priscilla Chalifoux, 19, and Sylvain John Boutros, 22, both of Montreal.

(CJOC, The Canadian Press)

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