The Navarro County grand jury recently issued indictments against three suspects arrested by the Corsica Police Department on August 2, found with hundreds of gift cards with electronically encoded stolen suspected credit card information, following an investigation of fraud and suspicious activity.
The suspects, Carla Castillo-Lopez, 23, Adrian Martinez-Smith, 28, and Jorge Urtiaga, 31, were charged in September for engaging in criminal activity.
Police chief Robert Johnson were told of a suspicious vehicle linked to people suspected of using fraudulent credit cards to purchase large quantities of gasoline at the Tiger Tote convenience store in the 3500 block of W Seventh Ave.
When officers from the CPD Patrol and the Criminal Investigation Division responded, they found two of the suspects’ vehicles in different locations. Further investigation of the scene provided officers with sufficient probable cause to arrest three people.
A search resulted in the recovery of nearly 300 gift cards containing suspected stolen electronically encoded credit card information.
An inventory of the suspects’ vehicles, a 2002 Ford Excursion and a 2006 Dodge Sprinter van, revealed that each was fitted with extra large spare gas tanks capable of holding over one hundred gallons. These tanks were installed inside the passenger area of the vehicles and were not visible from the outside.
“The Corsica Police Department CID unit is working with investigators from the Texas Department of Public Safety, as the suspects are believed to be working with a larger state or nationwide criminal network,” did he declare. “We are confident that additional fees will be charged by this agency as the investigation progresses. We would like to thank Tiger Tote for taking a proactive stance in protecting their customers.
The initial breach occurred about two weeks earlier and store management was able to provide CPD detectives with photos of the unidentified suspects and their vehicles, which displayed temporary paper license plates.
Tiger Tote employees check their pumps daily to make sure there are no internal or external skimmers. Store management immediately informed CPD of the initial violation and added an additional step of protection, assigning an employee to monitor gas pumps for suspicious activity, Johnson said.
According to Johnson, no credit card skimmer was found at the Tiger Tote station.
“We would also like to encourage all of our local convenience stores and gas stations to take the same approach to daily inspections and ensure that their monitoring system is functioning properly and can provide clear images that can help law enforcement. identify the suspects. “