Burbank Police announced the arrest today of two suspects who have been charged in an ATM skimming scheme. The suspects were taken into custody in connection with ATM thief at the U.S. Bank, 1750 West Olive Avenue, in Burbank. They are accused of using a small skimmer device to capture and store victims’ information. Earlier this month, on three separate days, thieves reportedly installed and removed a skimmer device on the ATM at that branch.
“The suspects used the stolen account information and created ‘cloned’ ATM cards, ” according to a Burbank Police news release. Then, the suspects allegedly withdrew cash from “several ATM’s around Los Angeles County.” After a tip from a U.S. bank employee, Burbank Police detectives put an ATM machine at a U.S. Bank at 4350 Pacific Coast Highway in Torrance under surveillance. At around 11 p.m. August 29, detectives spotted the suspects and arrested them at the ATM. Authorities say, a “… skimmer and a pinhole camera were recovered from the ATM machine.”
U.S. Bank and over 50 of its customers suffered losses of around $85,000 in the crime spree.
The suspects have been identified as 42 year-old Las Vegas resident, Ferenc Szekely, and 54 year-old, Alexsandru Barbu, of Studio City. The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office has filed several counts of identity theft and commercial burglary against the pair. Bail has been set at $150,000 each. Both are due to be arraigned in a Burbank court tomorrow.
Meanwhile, Burbank Police are working with other law enforcement to see if the duo can be linked to similar crimes at U.S. Bank branches throughout Los Angeles County.