4 arrested, released on Kauai amid concerning spread of fake jewelry scam

Four of the suspects arrested on Kauai with alleged ties to a growing jewelry scam.
Four of the suspects arrested on Kauai with alleged ties to a growing jewelry scam.(Kauai Police)
Published: Aug. 3, 2022 at 6:43 PM HST|Updated: Aug. 3, 2022 at 6:47 PM HST
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LIHUE (HawaiiNewsNow) - Kauai police arrested four men suspected of selling counterfeit jewelry in the latest scam circulating throughout the islands.

Police identified the suspects, all originally from Romania, as 32-year-old Mihail Drugan, 24-year-old Daniel Calin, 37-year-old Vasile Alexandru and 29-year-old Nicolae Dragomir.

Police say the suspects approach people on the street or at homes attempting to sell rare or antique jewelry. The storyline they stick to usually includes mentioning they are visitors who lost their wallets, and need money for various reasons, police said.

The jewelry they sell has proven to be fake, KPD said.

To make this arrest, KPD says they were able to track down the suspects after a witness shared a license plate of one of the vehicles used. It led officers to a Kapaa hotel where the four were taken into custody.

Officers later released the suspects pending investigation as they continue to dig deeper into the alleged scam.

“In addition to these four men, preliminary investigations reveal that there may be more individuals on Kaua’i that are committing these crimes,” said Assistant Chief Bryson Ponce of the Investigative Services Bureau. “We are asking the public to stay alert and to please report any similar experiences you or someone you know may have encountered. If possible, try to take note of individual characteristics of the person, along with their behavior patterns and vehicles, as it may assist law enforcement in identifying, apprehending, and prosecuting suspects.”

This scam has also spread on Oahu with dozens of reports of similar encounters, prompting calls for people to be vigilant.

Kauai police ask anyone on the Garden Isle who may have fallen victim, or knows someone who has, to call them at 808-241-1711.

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