Chicago teacher says fraudsters made $1,600 in unauthorized charges — and bank is denying her help

CHICAGO (CBS) — A local teacher says she noticed mysterious unauthorized charges on her bank account – from all over the world.

There was also a puzzling change of address.

But the victim, Andrea Turner, claimed every attempt to dispute the activity was met with denial after denial. So she turned to CBS 2’s Charlie De Mar for answers.

There were charges on Turner’s account from places ranging from the content of Australia to the beaches of sunny California. There was even a withdrawal of $1,000 from an ATM in New Jersey.

Turner does not live in New Jersey – a state that plays no role in her life, but which plays multiple roles in this story of fraud.

“I don’t have family in New Jersey,” she said. “I haven’t traveled to New Jersey.”

Turner has racked up charges on her Citibank checking account from exotic destinations all over the globe. But Turner, a special education teacher from Chicago, says she didn’t make a single charge.

To make the situation worse, in July, the address on her account inexplicably to an apartment in Perth Amboy, New Jersey – more than 800 miles from her South Side home.

“I never changed the address in the 33 years I’ve had the account,” Turner said. “I said, someone is doing this and it’s not me.”

Turner contested the charges, only to receive a denial from Citibank reading, “Based on the information you provided and the results of our research, we are unable to honor your request for reimbursement.” She claims she was also locked out of her own bank account when she tried to get cash herself.

That was when the mysterious charges totaling about $1,600 started piling up.   

“Somebody had taken five increments of $200, which was a total of $1,000, from my account,” Turner said, “and so I was like, okay, what’s going on?”

Turner’s dispute of the consecutive withdrawals from a New Jersey ATM was also denied by Citibank who wrote her in part:

“With the information we had, it wasn’t enough to support your claim and resolve the dispute in your favor.”

“I was ready to cry,” Turner said.

With multiple bank denials and police reports filed, Turner was left with seemingly nowhere to turn.

“I deserve to get respect, and I deserve to get my money back,” Turner said.

So she called CBS 2 to try and recover what she claims is hers.

We contacted Citibank late Friday, and were in communication with them over the weekend. A member of the Citibank public affairs team says Andrea’s case has been sent to its review team. 

We, of course, will follow up.  

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