Everett cops arrest suspected ID theft kingpin

Everett cops arrest suspected ID theft kingpin
Craig "Smokey" Allen Galey
EVERETT, Wash. - The suspected kingpin of a sophisticated identity theft ring that victimized hundreds of people has been arrested following a nearly year-long investigation by Everett police.

Officers arrested Craig "Smokey" Allen Galey, 34, in the early morning hours on Monday after a trail of evidence led to him, police said.

The identity theft ring, which involved a network of 22 other suspects, allegedly stole more than $70,000 from at least 200 people over a period of time, said Sgt. Robert Goetz of the Everett Police Department.

 Some of the evidence seized from the identity theft ring is shown.
The ring used at least two sophisticated ID theft labs to produce "the highest quality counterfeit documents that the detectives have ever seen," Goetz said.

Goetz said 18 of the 22 suspects involved in the ring have been arrested on various charges over the past several months.

Police said Galey is believed to be the ringleader of the group, and he has been the focus of an extensive investigation for the past several months as investigators tried to unravel the network of ID thieves.

During the course of the investigation, detectives dismantled the two ID theft labs and collected several hundred pieces of evidence.

So far, police have identified 204 named victims but suspect to find hundreds more as they evaluate the evidence that has been seized.

Detectives also have identified at least $70,000 in losses to the victims, but they expect the figure to rise significantly. The investigation was carried out by the Everett Police Department's Financial Crimes Unit.

Detectives and prosecutors plan an afternoon press conference Thursday to present more details of the case.