On Tuesday, 31-year-old Robert Mate was sentenced to 5 years in jail for setting up card-reading devices in ATM machines to gather money through fraud.
According to the authorities, the skimming scheme targeted more than one commercial bank and deceived many customers.
A report by the U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman stated that 16 other individuals were involved with Mate in the conspiracy and all of them are charged for the offense. He also told that Mate was taken into custody in Spain and was sent to the USA for trail.
The device was set up by Mate in New Jersey banks and in other states as well, but it is not confirmed whether he was living in New Jersey when the fraud was committed.
The total amount of money that was collected was $7,397,270 and Mate is ordered to pay the whole amount in restitution, told the U.S. Attorney Deputy Public Affairs Officer Will Skaggs.
The banks in which the device was installed were in Monmouth and Ocean counties, Passaic and Union counties.
The lawyer who represented Mate was Angelo Servidio.
According to Fishman, the main role in the whole scheme was played by Mate as he gathered information with the help of the recording device. He created fake bank cards and he withdrew a large amount of money illegally using information of different individuals.
34-year-old Marius Vintila and Bogdan Radu were also involved in playing a major role as they assembled the card-reader devices and pinhole camera panels. They collected details of the bank and PIN numbers utilizing the device. The devices were removed from the ATM machines in some days as the information was saved in them. Details of the individuals who used the ATM machines to withdraw the money were loaded onto the devices to create fake bank cards, which were utilized to steal a large amount of money.
Last year, Vintila was convicted for the offense as he played the main role in the fraud scheme.
30-year-old Ionut Vasile Ciurba-Stana, one of the group members, has not been taken into custody yet.
Mate has to pay the amount of $7,397,270 in restitution and he has to spend the ordered time of 57 months in jail, with five years of supervised release.
The bank fraud case was investigated by the U.S. Secret Service and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement after which the offenders were charged.