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Florida Counterfeit Credit Card Ring Busted

Six individuals in Florida have been indicted for running an organized credit card counterfeiting ring that netted more than 200,000 stolen account numbers, the U.S. Secret Service said today.

Julio Lopez, 30, and his girlfriend, Anett Villar, 26, were arrested in February for trafficking in credit cards they allegedly fabricated using legitimate account numbers purchased online from other criminals. (Both are listed as living in Hialeah, Fla.)

Investigators said they traced communications between Lopez -- using the online screen name "Blinky" -- and four Cuban men in Florida who authorities alleged were sending large payments to cyber crooks in Eastern Europe in exchange for tens of thousands of stolen credit card numbers. Those numbers were then used to fabricate fake credit cards in several production centers throughout Florida.

Neither indictment includes this information, but a press release from the Secret Service said the men paid for the goods via E-Gold, an online payment service that was raided by the FBI earlier this year.

Indicted on charges of aggravated identity theft, counterfeit credit card trafficking and conspiracy are Miguel Alegria, 46, of Hialeah, Fla.; Raynier Pupo, 22, of Miami, Fla.; Ariel Montero, 32, of Aventura, Fla.; and Javier Padron-Bravo, 35, of Aventura, Fla.

Government documents indicate the counterfeit cards fetched a high price. According to a copy of the indictment, Lopez sold 50 fabricated credit cards with security features and counterfeit images to an undercover agent at a cost of $15 each. The government alleges the ring was responsible for total fraud losses of more than $75 million.

If convicted, the six face could face sentences ranging from 17-and-one-half to 47 years in prison.

By Brian Krebs  |  July 9, 2007; 12:33 PM ET
Categories:  Fraud  
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Comments

They should face life in prison, in Siberia.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 9, 2007 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Correction:

They should face a Shiite militia death squad, in Iraq.

Posted by: Ken L | July 9, 2007 11:07 PM | Report abuse

"Lopez sold 50 fabricated credit cards with security features and counterfeit images to an undercover agent at a cost of $15 each"

Man, that's cheap. They should go to business school so they could figure out the real value of the cards.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 10, 2007 9:04 AM | Report abuse

all i can say is FOCUS in e-commerce business credit card information of 1 customer is vulnerable.

Posted by: robert | July 10, 2007 10:42 AM | Report abuse

Never mind Iraq or Siberia. Just shatter their kneecaps with a hammer, then leave them on the side of the road without any money. It will be hours before they get to see a doctor.

Posted by: pat | July 10, 2007 10:44 AM | Report abuse

OK. I'm grateful the Secret Service, FBI, CIA, Local Sheriff, etc., collared these scum bags. But, I'm left to wonder how many other similar operations are busy as little ants stealing/compromising/destroying peoples' lives right now.

The only punishment good enough for these rats is to stick pins in 'em till they look like porcupines and pour rubbing alcohol on them ... wiggle the pins and do it again ... every 15 minutes or so.

Ratbastids.

Posted by: Rhonda | July 10, 2007 3:00 PM | Report abuse

pour alcohol into open wounds think of the grannies relegated to subsisting off of cat food because of these scum

Posted by: Music-Seed | July 11, 2007 12:42 AM | Report abuse

The ability to use your brain to control people's mind its not easy.they should not be killed or done anything,because those who they steal from need extra carefulness .but in the real sense stealing is bad.lets give them minimum penalty.and let them be.

Posted by: andew sirture | July 11, 2007 12:42 AM | Report abuse

send them to guantanamo...for life!

Posted by: pocholo | July 11, 2007 5:46 AM | Report abuse

So where can I get a $15 card today?

Posted by: investor | July 11, 2007 10:22 AM | Report abuse

After the emotions runs down, lets stop and think about what these young people were able to accomplish. There was no mention of their education, which probably means that they are self-taught. No professors, classrooms, textbooks, tests, etc. Just some slimy, young punks who have no morals, no brains, no class. Well, they were smart enough to penatrate the supercoded, electrionic protective barrriers that are designed to safegard our Fort Knox money system, then dumb enough to set up and control an underground organization about the size of a small chain of stores. And some want to send to the death chamber, incarcerate them, eternal hell on earth would be too good for these scumbags. Say what? And toss out some of the best master minds of our times? On the contrary, we should applaud them for their genius. We should take advantage of their talents. Tink of how helpful their advice could be to FBI, CITI Bank, the people who design and control these full-proof systems. There's an old saying..."to catch a their, you have to think like a theif". Well, here they are, at the top of their class, standing before us, and all we have to do is to get them on our side. Then, couldn't they become a very valuble asset to the system? Couldn't their inquisitive minds help thwart off future thieves? Me think so. And if so, then who would be the beneficiary? There's another old saying...something about turning lemons into lemonade.
people were able to accomplish

Posted by: John Black | July 11, 2007 2:59 PM | Report abuse

After the emotions runs down, lets stop and think about what these young people were able to accomplish. There was no mention of their education, which probably means that they are self-taught. No professors, classrooms, textbooks, tests, etc. Just some slimy, young punks who have no morals, no brains, no class. Well, they were smart enough to penatrate the supercoded, electrionic protective barrriers that are designed to safegard our Fort Knox money system, then dumb enough to set up and control an underground organization about the size of a small chain of stores. And some want to send to the death chamber, incarcerate them, eternal hell on earth would be too good for these scumbags. Say what? And toss out some of the best master minds of our times? On the contrary, we should applaud them for their genius. We should take advantage of their talents. Tink of how helpful their advice could be to FBI, CITI Bank, the people who design and control these full-proof systems. There's an old saying..."to catch a their, you have to think like a theif". Well, here they are, at the top of their class, standing before us, and all we have to do is to get them on our side. Then, couldn't they become a very valuble asset to the system? Couldn't their inquisitive minds help thwart off future thieves? Me think so. And if so, then who would be the beneficiary? There's another old saying...something about turning lemons into lemonade.
people were able to accomplish

Posted by: John Black | July 11, 2007 2:59 PM | Report abuse

and none of the florida residents speak english whereas the russian/eastern europeans are fluent in several languages, including english.

Posted by: jesus | July 12, 2007 11:24 AM | Report abuse

www.diab4ever.piczo.com

Posted by: mode | July 16, 2007 11:58 PM | Report abuse


I'M PROUD OF THEM, LIFE IS A STRUGGLE!

Posted by: ola | July 30, 2007 6:32 AM | Report abuse

A credit card is a system of payment named after the small plastic card issued to users of the system. A credit card is different from a debit card in that it does not remove money from the user's account after every transaction. In the case of credit cards, the issuer lends money to the consumer (or the user). It is also different from a charge card (though this name is sometimes used by the public to describe credit cards), which requires the balance to be paid in full each month. In contrast, a credit card allows the consumer to 'revolve' their balance, at the cost of having interest charged. Most credit cards are the same shape and size, as specified by the ISO 7810 standard. http://usacreditcards.cn/

Posted by: usacreditcards | July 31, 2007 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Just an FYI for any of those in Arizona; these rings are alive and well here. This happened with my debit card this week. The individuals bought several late-night purchases within the span of 1 hour. Nice pics on the store video cams - PD very grateful.

Posted by: TAZ | August 12, 2007 12:28 PM | Report abuse

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