The Investigators

Feb 5, 2013 11:59 PM

Authorities seize over 200 fraudulent credit cards

TUCSON - If you've ever had your identity and credit stolen or fear that happening, this story's for you.

It illustrates just how far and wide and fast your stolen information can travel.

The News 4 Tucson Investigators have brought you stories warning about this kind of theft which can ruin your life and your credit.

In this case, police nabbed a man who they say was carrying over 200 fraudulent credit cards. And you may be startled to find out where they got him.

"The criminals may fly through here and when they do we will catch them and this is kind of what happened here," says John Ivanoff, Chief of Public Safety with the Tucson Airport Authority.

He explained to us what his officers found right here at TIA: 238 stolen credit cards wrapped in cellophane and placed in the interior lining of a suitcase.

"You don't normally see 200 credit cards bundled and taped," Ivanoff says. "Very readily apparent that this criminal activity was rather extensive."

According to the police report, TSA officers screening checked-in luggage saw something suspicious about the bag in question. They searched the bag found the stacks of stolen credit cards then alerted airport police.

"We made sure that we found the suspect and related to him that we had some questions about what was in his suitcase."

That bag was traced to a man waiting to board a flight to Phoenix with a final destination in Chicago.

He was originally charged with over 400 felony counts of theft and control of a credit card. Those charges were dropped while new forensic evidence is examined which could result in even more arrests.

We went to the suspect's house to ask him about the case but he was not home at the time.

In the meantime, this case of credit card theft winds slowly and carefully through several law enforcement agencies.

"When you are dealing with fraud, when you are dealing with forgery type cases, they're very, very complex," explains Chief Ivanoff. "They have lots and lots of tentacles that go in a lot of different directions."

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