By CBSLA Staff

RIVERSIDE (CBSLA) — Police identified four men wanted in connection with several cases of EDD fraud out of Riverside and are now asking for the public’s help in finding them.

The Riverside Police Department says there has been a surge in unemployment benefit fraud reports since August of last year, including residents who found their information being used illegally for fraudulent claims and a flood of mail from EDD being sent to Riverside homes in the names of other people. In some cases, the suspects would show up at homes, demanding their mail from the EDD.

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(credit: Riverside Police Department)

Taiwo Oluwatumininu, 31, of Hawthorne, was identified by police as being wanted for five counts each of false unemployment claims and identity theft. Police say he stole about $100,000 in unemployment benefits.

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Markel Lashawen Johnson, 24, of San Jacinto; 35-year-old Brandon Wills of Riverside; and 19-year-old Preston Lamar Lynch Jr. of Riverside, are also wanted for filing false unemployment claims, identity theft and conspiracy to commit fraud. Johnson and Lynch alleged stole about $20,000 in unemployment benefits, while Wills allegedly stole almost $23,000.

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Police say they continue to investigate allegations of EDD fraud. Anyone with information about these investigations and arrests can contact Detective Brian Money at (951) 7118 or via email at BMoney@RiversideCA.gov.