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Second Romanian charged in connection with ATM racket

Investigators from Jamaica's Counter-Terrorism and Organized Crime (C-TOC) branch have laid charges against a second Romanian linked to a major ATM racket rocking the local financial sector.
 
Daniel Suteu was charged on Thursday with breaches of the Law Reform Act and the Cyber Crimes Act. He was charged jointly with Andre Sterling, a resident of Portmore, St Catherine. The two men were held on Tuesday making illegal withdrawals from an ATM at the Pavillion Mall in St Andrew.  C-TOC said the men had rigged the machine.
 
The police revealed that they seized $150,000, 20 fraudulent cards and several ATM receipts showing withdrawals.
 
They also raided Mr Suteu's rented premises and seized additional cards and other documents. The men are booked to appear in court next week.
 
The cops say the Romanian scamming network operating in Jamaica has been installing devices in ATMs, capturing the personal information on cardholders. They have been targeting ATMs in the Corporate Area, particularly Upper St Andrew, Montego Bay and St Ann. More than $50 million has been stolen from ATMs since January.
 
First Romanian remanded
                                                            
Meanwhile, Claudiu Precup, the first Romanian national captured by the local police, was further remanded when he appeared before the St Andrew Parish Court on Thursday.
 
Mr. Precup, who was charged last week during an operation by C-TOC, was remanded until April 27.
 
Investigators say he was held in possession of more than 100 blank ATM cards. The cops say the foreigners have been transferring the stolen money out of Jamaica through the remittance service.
 
Property owners warned
                                
C-TOC, in the meantime, is warning property owners that they face serious criminal charges if they allow their rented premises to be used for illegal activities. The cops say the Romanians have been renting premises in the Corporate Area and St Ann to carrying out their illegal activities.
 
The police are urging property owners to carry out detailed background checks on these foreigners. They are also urging cardholders to be on high alert and call the police if they observe persons spending an extraordinarily long period in ATMs.
 
Persons accessing ATM services are also urged to turn on their blue tooth on their cell phones when entering the ATM as this will alert them whether the machine has been compromised.
                                           

 



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