News and Press Releases

FORMER FUGITIVES SENTENCED FOR POSSESSING MORE THAN 3,000 STOLEN CREDIT CARD NUMBERS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 3, 2010

Jeffrey H. Sloman, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Michael K. Fithen, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Secret Service, Miami Field Office, announced the sentencing today of defendants Octavio Delemos, 26, and Ruddy Perez-Espinal, 25, formerly of Miami-Dade County, for conspiring to commit credit card fraud, credit card fraud, and aggravated identity theft. U.S. District Court Marcia G. Cooke sentenced Delemos to 48 months’ imprisonment and Perez-Espinal to 64 months’ imprisonment. Both defendants were ordered to serve a three year term of supervised release following their incarceration, and to pay $171,562 in restitution.

According to court documents, in December 2007, a confidential informant told law enforcement that Delemos, Perez-Espinal, and their co-defendant Alfredo Dalmau were manufacturing counterfeit credit cards at a Medley, FL, home where all three defendants resided. On December 11, 2007, law enforcement began the process of securing a warrant to search the Medley residence.

While law enforcement agents were obtaining the search warrant, agents observed a group of armed home invaders, pretending to be police officers, raid the defendants’ residence, beat the defendants and their guests, tie up the defendants, and attempt to steal the defendants’ proceeds from credit card fraud. Law enforcement arrested the home invaders, secured a search warrant, and arrested Delemos, Perez-Espinal and Dalmau for credit card fraud.

Inside the Medley residence, law enforcement found evidence of a counterfeit credit card manufacturing operation, including hundreds of blank plastic cards used to make counterfeit credit cards, rolls of tipping foil to create the magnetic strips, partially manufactured counterfeit credit cards, and laptop computers. Subsequent analysis of the laptops revealed that the defendants possessed more than 3,000 stolen credit card numbers. Each defendant possessed a fraudulent identification with the defendant’s picture but a fraudulent name. In addition, each defendant possessed at least one counterfeit credit card with the defendant’s fictitious name but a real victim’s credit card number.

After indictment, the defendants filed a Motion to Suppress the evidence found inside the residence. After the district court denied the Motion in May 2008, the defendants fled to the Dominican Republic to avoid trial. In May 2009, Delemos and Perez-Espinal were arrested in the Dominican Republic and extradited to the United States. Alfredo Dalmau remains a fugitive, suspected of living in the Dominican Republic.

In December 2009, defendants Delemos and Perez-Espinal pled guilty to conspiring to commit credit card fraud, producing counterfeit access devices, possessing 15 or more counterfeit and unauthorized access devices, and aggravated identity theft. Because the defendants fled, Judge Cooke imposed a sentencing enhancement for obstruction of justice and rejected the defendants’ claim that they deserved a reduction for acceptance of responsibility. The Florida State Attorney’s Office is prosecuting the home invaders.

Mr. Sloman commended the investigative efforts of the U.S. Secret Service. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys H. Ron Davidson and Scott Edenfield.

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A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

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