Cuban crime ring tied to credit card skimmers found in 7 Ohio counties

Cuban crime ring tied to credit card skimmers found in 7 Ohio counties

WARREN COUNTY, OH (WOIO) - Identity theft devices, known as skimmers, have been found at gas stations in seven Ohio counties and it could be tied to organized Cuban crime rings.

The most recent skimming devices on credit card readers in gas pumps were found in Warren County on Monday, WXIX reported. However, skimmers have been found by county inspectors in Montgomery, Butler, Fayette, Hamilton, Union and Washington counties.

The devices are placed inside of the credit card reader, and undetectable by customers. Criminals have been placing these over the past couple of months in attempts to steal credit and debit card numbers, according to Warren County Auditor Matt Nolan.

MORE: How to spot ATM skimming devices

Two state agencies are working to catch those responsible, according to the Dayton Daily News.

"There seems to have been a pattern with a group of Cubans that have been hitting the Ohio area as well as Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky," Frank Applegate, an investigator with the Ohio Highway Patrol, told the Dayton Daily News. "They've been coming up from Louisville, coming up from Texas, and hitting Ohio pretty hard, as well as surrounding states."

Evidence of the Cuban rings working in Ohio has been gathered in traffic stops in recent months, Applegate said.

Customers are encouraged to use gas pumps easily in view of the attendant and to never use a debit card when purchasing gas.

"We are urging gas station employees and customers to be extra cautious," said Nolan.

You are asked to contact local police if you see any signs of pumps being tampered with.

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