9 PEOPLE ARRESTED FOR ATM SKIMMING

WHITBY, ON, April 20 /CNW/ - Nine people have been arrested following a 2 month investigation into an organized crime group compromising payment cards at Automated Banking Machines (ABM) across Southern Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia and Nova Scotia.

The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Organized Crime Enforcement Bureau (OCEB) Identity Crimes Unit (ICU), assisted by the Durham Regional Police Service (DRPS), Halton Regional Police Service (HRPS), York Regional Police Service (YRPS), Niagara Regional Police Service (NRPS), OPP Highway Safety Division, Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and OCEB Assets Forfeiture Unit concluded a two month investigation into an organized crime group of Eastern European individuals who were involved in the tampering of Automated Banking Machines (ABM) in order to skim payment card data across Ontario, Quebec, and British Columbia with some occurrences reported in Nova Scotia.  These individuals attach devices to ABM's that enable the capture of debit card data and Personal Identification Numbers (PIN) during the legitimate use of banking products by unsuspecting victims.  The devices are left in place from one to two hours and then the skimmed data is encoded onto other plastic cards to be used by the perpetrators to access victims' accounts with out their knowledge.

This group is responsible for over 300 tampers which have resulted in losses to victims of approximately two million dollars since September of 2010.

On April 19, 2011, investigators executed 8 search warrants and affected 9 arrests in Richmond Hill, Vaughan, Markham, Toronto and St. Catherines.  Police seized 3 vehicles as offence related property and seized ABM overlays, forged payment cards, property obtained by crime, cocaine and a quantity of cash. ABM overlays are devices placed on machines in order to capture payment card data and customer Personal Identification Numbers.

Charged in relation to this investigation are:

Robert DESLIPPE , male, 30 years old of St Catherines is charged with Fraud Over $5000, Conspiracy to Commit an Indictable Offence, Possession of Instrument for use in forging credit cards, Possession and Use of Credit Card Data, Laundering Proceeds of Crime, Possession of Property Obtained by Crime, Participation in a Criminal organization, Theft of Credit Card Data and Purposely Possess Identification Information.

Arthur CAMPBELL, male, 32 years old of St Catherines is charged with Fraud Under $5000, Conspiracy to Commit an Indictable Offence, Possession of Instrument for use in forging credit cards, Possession and Use of Credit Card Data, Laundering Proceeds of Crime, Possession of Property Obtained by Crime, Participation in a Criminal organization, Theft of Credit Card Data and Purposely Possess Identification Information.

Valentin MOLDOVAN, male, 21 years old of Richmond Hill is charged with Fraud Over $5000, Conspiracy to Commit an Indictable Offence, Possession of Instrument for use in forging credit cards, Possession and Use of Credit Card Data, Laundering Proceeds of Crime, Possession of Property Obtained by Crime, Participation in a Criminal organization, Theft of Credit Card Data and Purposely Possess Identification Information.

Radu OPREA, male, 33 years old of no fixed address is charged with Fraud Over $5000, Conspiracy to Commit an Indictable Offence, Possession of Instrument for use in forging credit cards, Possession and Use of Credit Card Data, Laundering Proceeds of Crime, Possession of Property Obtained by Crime, Participation in a Criminal organization, Theft of Credit Card Data and Purposely Possess Identification Information.

Laura IOANA, female, 24 years old of Vaughan is charged with Fraud Over $5000, Conspiracy to Commit an Indictable Offence, Possession of Instrument for use in forging credit cards, Possession and Use of Credit Card Data, Laundering Proceeds of Crime, Possession of Property Obtained by Crime, Participation in a Criminal organization, Theft of Credit Card Data and Purposely Possess Identification Information.

Ioan Florin TANASA, male, 35 years old of no fixed address is charged with Fraud Over $5000, Conspiracy to Commit an Indictable Offence, Possession of Instrument for use in forging credit cards, Possession and Use of Credit Card Data, Laundering Proceeds of Crime, Possession of Property Obtained by Crime, Participation in a Criminal organization, Theft of Credit Card Data and Purposely Possess Identification Information.

Paul GALATAN, male, 25 years old of no fixed address is charged with Fraud Over $5000, Conspiracy to Commit an Indictable Offence, Possession of Instrument for use in forging credit cards, Possession and Use of Credit Card Data, Laundering Proceeds of Crime, Possession of Property Obtained by Crime, Participation in a Criminal organization, Theft of Credit Card Data and Purposely Possess Identification Information.

Dragos Catalin NEACSY, male, 33 years old of no fixed address is charged with Possession of Cocaine

Christian IOANA, male, 27 years old of no fixed address is charged with Fraud Over $5000, Conspiracy to Commit an Indictable Offence, Possession of Instrument for use in forging credit cards, Possession and Use of Credit Card Data, Laundering Proceeds of Crime, Possession of Property Obtained by Crime, Participation in a Criminal organization, Theft of Credit Card Data and Purposely Possess Identification Information.

The accused were held for bail hearings at the Durham Region Court house located at 150 Bond Street East in Oshawa.

Detective Sergeant Doug Cousens of the Identity Crimes Unit states, "this is another example of the integrated efforts of police agencies working together to identify and capture those individuals responsible for this emerging crime trend. Identity theft costs Canadians hundreds of millions of dollars each year." Police continue to work with the banking industry to detect and prevent identity crimes

Police caution the public to always be alert and aware when using their respective bank debit and/or credit cards and to take the time to get familiar with the appearance of the ABM they regularly use.   You will find a number of tips and contacts at the OPP Fraud Prevention links.

www.opp.ca
Follow us on Twitter at:  www.twitter.com/OPP_News


SOURCE Ontario Provincial Police

For further information:

Acting Detective Staff Sergeant Rob Krzyzaniak
Ontario Provincial Police
Organized Crime Enforcement Bureau 
905-671-6878


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