Crack down on SLO County identity theft rings
June 16, 2012
The San Luis Obispo County operators of two high-tech bank scam operations that ripped off hundreds of Chase Bank customers over the last three years are winding their way through the court system as the result of a crackdown by Attorney General Kamala Harris’ newly created eCrime Unit, according to a press release.
On Friday, Gnel Snapyan, 35, was sentenced in San Luis Obispo County Superior Court to 364 days in state prison and five years probation. His co-conspirator, Gervork Aroutiounyan, 48, was sentenced in March to three years and eight months in state prison. The men were also ordered to pay restitution to Chase Bank.
Between July 2010 and February 2011, Snapyan fraudulently withdrew approximately $220,000 from the bank accounts of more than 300 victims in Santa Clara, Marin, Fresno, San Luis Obispo counties.
In a separate scam case, Santiago Alcantar, 37, Genea Antoine, 39, and Anthony Garcia, 30, entered a plea of guilty on Friday in San Luis Obispo County Superior Court to one count of conspiracy to commit grand theft, computer access fraud, identity theft, second degree burglary, and forgery of access cards.
Between October 2010 and February 2011, Alcantar, Antoine, and Garcia ran their skimmer operation in Los Angeles, San Luis Obispo, San Bernardino, and Ventura counties. The crew stole approximately $217,000 from more than 200 victims.
The case was investigated by the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s department and the Attorney General’s eCrime Unit.
Sentencing is scheduled for July 27, at which time Alcantar will be sentenced to four years in state prison; Antoine to two years in state prison and Garcia to a sentence that will not exceed one year and 4 months.
In both cases, Chase Bank reimbursed customers for their losses.