Ex-doctor arraigned on identity theft, drug delivery charges

Police recommend ways to protect against identity theft

By: Andy Kozlowski | Madison - Park News | Published February 26, 2018

 Dimitar Cvetkoski

Dimitar Cvetkoski

MADISON HEIGHTS — A former doctor wanted on multiple outstanding warrants has been arrested after he allegedly advertised prescription medication on Craigslist. Following his arrest, police said they uncovered hundreds of credit card numbers and other identifying information in his possession, leading to charges of identity theft. 

Dimitar Cvetkoski, 40, of Warren, was arrested by Madison Heights detectives in a sting operation around 2:40 p.m. Feb. 14. Police did not say where he was arrested, but did say that the suspect attempted to sell drugs to an undercover officer.  

Cvetkoski has been charged with six felony counts, including three counts of controlled substance delivery and manufacture; one count of possessing personal identifying information with intent to commit identity theft; one count of stealing or retaining a financial transaction device without consent; and one count of counterfeit prescription forms. 

Cvetkoski was arraigned Feb. 16 in Madison Heights 43rd District Court. He was being held on a $66,000 cash-or-surety bond. At press time, he had not yet received his court-appointed attorney. 

The arrest concluded an investigation that involved both the Oakland County Sheriff’s Narcotics Enforcement Team and the Troy Special Investigations Unit. 

Madison Heights Police Lt. Michael Siladke said that preliminary investigations show that Cvetkoski had multiple warrants for his arrest. He also had a medical doctor license through the state of Michigan that expired in June 2010. 

Cvetkoski allegedly described himself as a doctor in an ad on Craigslist in the “men seeking women“ category. Police said the ad also mentioned that he had prescription medication and “party favors” available at a local Madison Heights hotel.

Police said they found numerous fraudulently manufactured prescription forms upon his arrest, as well as numerous prescription medications. Police also said Cvetkoski possessed hundreds of credit card numbers and other personally identifying information that could be used for identity theft, and police said Cvetkoski had already used some of that information to commit crimes. 

“Through everyone’s efforts, a lot of sensitive information was taken off the street, hopefully preventing some of this information from creating additional identity theft victims,” Siladke said in a statement. “Additionally, with the problems with prescription drugs on the streets these days, it is also rewarding to think that an avenue for some of these drugs getting into our community was stopped by the arrest and charging of Cvetkoski.” 

Defending against identity theft

In an interview, Siladke said there are many ways that identity theft can occur.

The Michigan Identity Theft Protection Act (Act 452 of 2004) defines “personal identifying information” as a “name, number or other information that is used for the purpose of identifying a specific person, or providing access to a person’s financial accounts.” 

This can include a person’s name, address and phone number; driver’s license or state ID; Social Security number; employee/employer information; passports; health insurance; mother’s maiden name; account numbers and passwords; automated or electronic signatures; biometrics; medical records; and financial data including credit card numbers.

“Understanding what information criminals may try and obtain from you is important so people can safeguard that information,” Siladke said. “People can have their identity compromised through a computer or Wi-Fi network, a credit card skimmer or card reader, or simply a larceny of a wallet, purse or piece of mail.

“Identify theft is a traumatizing and invasive experience,” he added. “The incident can have lasting effects on an individual, which can compromise credit and loan ability, along with reputations. It can take a long time for a person to rebuild their credit and feel secure after an identity theft incident.”

The lieutenant said that everyone should change their computer passwords on a regular basis and ensure the use of a secure Wi-Fi network. As a general rule of thumb, avoid using any public Wi-Fi hotspots. Also maintain physical possession of your purse or wallet when out in public, and use a shredder to dispose of any unneeded documents with your name or any identifying information. 

Siladke said that people should also research their options for credit and fraud protection services offered by companies, including major credit-reporting companies, and check their credit reports on a regular basis for any unusual activity. 

But what if identity theft has occurred? For a credit theft, victims should notify their credit card company right away so that the card can be canceled. For an employment identity theft, such as the filing of unemployment benefits in your name, one should file a complaint with their employer first. And in both cases, the victim should contact local police. One can file a police report in the jurisdiction where they live or the jurisdiction where their information was used. A report should also then be filed online with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). 

“All people are vulnerable to identity theft,” Siladke said. “Seniors seem to be less technologically at risk for identity theft, but they seem to be more susceptible to scams involving telemarketers or misrepresentation. Everyone should verify who they are talking with before giving personal information out. Any legitimate company will not have you send them money-grams, Green Dot cards or gift cards of any kind.”

If you have questions about identity theft or information on local crime, call Madison Heights police at (248) 585-2100.