A 19-year-old Lawrenceville man's statement to Milton police after his arrest reads like a how to for financial transaction fraud.
The suspect was detained by a loss prevention officer at Fry's on April 11 after he bought an Apple MacBook Pro 17" laptop. The cashier noted that one number was on the Visa "1-2-3 Rewards" debit card, while another account number showed on the store's credit card reader.
Another man who walked in with this suspect and also picked up a MacBook Pro had his transaction declined, but he left after the first suspect was detained.
The suspect told Milton police a friend drove him to Fry's but his car was found in the lot. Inside the car police found four debit cards, a driver's license, a piece of paper with personal information of another man, cell pones, $647 in cash, another MacBook Pro–and a credit card reader/writer.
The suspect said he bought the credit card reader/writer off of eBay a few months ago for $200. He said he obtains "dump"–available credit card accounts with funds–from an online forum. He named two web addresses, but said those change often because of police. He explained the sites aren't open to just anybody. You have to be invited, and three other users have to vouch for you. then you can go shopping for these dumps and cvv's (credit card security codes). He pays $20 for a signature "dump," but the prices go up by the class of the card. He uses an account based in China and mostly deals with Russians and Nigerians.
With all of this information, he is able to put the "dumps" onto loadable gift cards he gets from grocery stores.
He also said the MacBook Pro laptops were to be sold online, with the two men sharing the proceeds.
Christian Ry Cangeopol, 19, of Lawrenceville, was cited with criminal attempt financial transaction fraud, financial transaction card fraud, identity fraud and possession of financial card forgery devices. He was jailed on April 12 and released on $30,000 bond on April 13.
Government Grant Scam Too Good to be True
A Milton man fell victim to a scam that was just too good to be true.
The local resident told Milton police on April 9 that he was called by a man who told him if he paid $850, he would receive a $10,000 grant from the government. So he sent three money orders to people in India so he would receive the grant. He has not heard from them since he sent the money, and believes it was a scam.
Milton Residents Discover Identity Fraud When Filing Taxes
A Milton man filed his taxes through H&R Block on April 9, but the next day he received an email from the company telling him the IRS already had a return. The victim was told a return had been filed with his Social Security number and a refund check already had been mailed.
Following advice from the IRS, on April 10 he called the FTC, Social Security administration, all three credit agencies and Milton police to report his Social Security number had been used fraudulently.
And a day after this report was filed, another Milton resident was telling police she, too, was victim of identity theft in a similar manner. She reported to police that when her CPA filed her taxes on April 11, the IRS said a tax return had already been filed using her Social Security number. So she also notified her banks and credit agencies about the identity fraud.
Sawnee Electric Cutoff Visit First Warning of Identity Fraud
A Milton woman first learned she was the victim of identity fraud when Sawnee Electric stopped by her house to turn off her power.
She was told this was because she had a past due amount of $245.51, but the victim said she never received a March bill. So she immediately logged onto her account via the Internet, and discovered an additional account under her name, but with a different address. The person who added that account on Feb. 8 used her full name and the last four digits of her Social Security number.
Regular Bank Account Check Catches Fraud
A Milton resident discovered two fraudulent charges of approximately $350 on his Wells Fargo debit card made at 11 p.m. on April 13.
He told Milton police that he last checked his account online on April 11, and there were no fraudulent charges.
For questions about this blotter, email Bob Pepalis.