GONZALES, LA (WAFB) - Two Romanian nationals have pleaded guilty for their roles in an ATM card skimming scheme, US Attorney Brandon Fremin reports.
Alexandru-Nicusor Nita, 27, pleaded guilty Wednesday, August 22 to conspiracy to commit bank fraud, while his co-conspirator, Daniela-Stefani Ianev, 31, pleaded guilty to the same charge on August 9. Both face significant jail time, fines, and periods of supervised release.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) reports from November to late December of 2017, Nita and Ianev conspired with others to commit bank fraud by installing ATM skimming devices on ATMs at several financial institutions in Gonzales and other areas in the state. These devices captured the financial data of hundreds of victims. The stolen info was then encoded onto blank debit and gift cards.
The DOJ says Nita and Ianev also installed cameras near the ATMs to capture victims' PINs. This information was then used to make unauthorized withdrawals from the victims' bank accounts.
"Anyone who attempts to undermine the American people's confidence in our financial systems through fraudulent criminal activity will be prosecuted vigorously. These defendants preyed upon unsuspecting victims by stealing and using their personal financial information in an effort to enrich themselves and today, they have been held accountable. I sincerely appreciate the hard work and collaborative efforts of our prosecutors, the Secret Service, EBRSO, and the Gonzales Police Department in their quest to bring these criminals to justice," said Fremin.