Joseph Stroup AKA America’s Most Wanted Deadbeat Dad Busted Living In Canada Under An Assumed Name
America’s most wanted deadbeat dad has been found living in Canada. He is now heading to federal prison. Joseph Stroup ran from a hefty child support bill for decades and became known as a “Most Wanted Deadbeat Dad.”
A federal judge ordered Joseph Stroup to two years in prison and one year of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay $534,000 in restitution.
America’s most wanted deadbeat dad pleaded guilty in May to an indictment alleging failure to pay child support from 1998. Stroup had amassed $559,000 in arrears.
He was living outside Calgary under an assumed name, Joop Cousteau.
Stroup and his wife divorced in 1989. The court ordered Stroup to pay child support of $100 per month to his ex-wife for their four children. Stroup told the court he was disabled and unemployed. As a result, the Michigan judge lowered the child support payments from $100 per month to $14 per month. after
Stroup sold a successful Internet business in 1996 for more than $2 million. As a result, authorities modified Stroup’s child support payments to account for his unreported income and he fled the U.S.
Consequently, Stroup was named the United States’ “Most Wanted Deadbeat.”
Stroup was arrested February 1st in Alberta.
Warren said authorities believe Stroup entered Canada using his real name and then assumed the identity. Stroup had been using the name Joop Cousteau for at least a decade.
Alert Bar Owner Discovers America’s Most Wanted Deadbeat Dad
Scott Winograd, the owner of the Bears Den Restaurant in Calgary said Stroup had been a regular at his restaurant for several months.
Winograd said Stroup ordered a cherry Coke and asked for eight maraschino cherries. Later, Stroup pulled out a pit and said he had “broken some of his dental work.”
“That doesn’t happen,” Winograd said. Maraschino cherries don’t have pits.
Winograd said Stroup came in the next day with dental forms that “looked like they were downloaded off the internet.”
As a result, Winograd decided to play internet sleuth. He Googled the name given on the dental forms, which was Joop Cousteau.
Winograd said he found Stroup’s picture on a United States government website. He learned Joop Costeau was an alias for Joseph Stroup. Winograd told Canadian media:
You’d think if you’re on the run you’d come up with John Smith. Not Joop Cousteau.
Joop Cousteau was also believed to be responsible for scamming other people in Calgary.
He invited Stroup back to the restaurant in order to confirm he was the same man and then contacted U.S. authorities.
Winograd said he received calls from the FBI, U.S. Marshalls and the Inspector General’s office within half an hour of his call. Winograd also stated:
I’m just glad that he’s not in the area anymore and in a position to screw more people over.
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