Brazilian National Pleads Guilty to Aggravated Identity Theft in Card-Skimming Scheme
U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans announced that Herik Lucian Enedino Dos Santos (“DOS SANTOS”), age 32, a citizen of Brazil, pleaded guilty yesterday before U.S. District Judge Sarah S. Vance to aggravated identity theft.
According to the court documents, Dos Santos and three other Brazilian nationals were arrested by members of the Louisiana Financial Crimes Task Force at a hotel in the Algiers neighborhood of New Orleans on August 3, 2017. Federal and state law enforcement officers found the defendants in possession of re-encoded credit cards that contained stolen debit card information from actual customers. These individuals also possessed embossers, encoders, ATM skimmers, false identification, and other contraband. In a coordinated investigation in Oklahoma City, U.S. Secret Service agents arrested another Brazilian national who had been mailing skimmers, pinhole cameras, and other tools for credit card fraud to the four New Orleans-based members of this conspiracy.
Dos Santos pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated identity theft in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1028A. He faces a mandatory sentence of two years in prison, one year of supervised release, and a $250,000.00 fine or a fine equal to the greater of twice the gross gain or twice the gross loss caused by this offense. Judge Vance scheduled the sentencing for August 22, 2018.
U.S. Attorney Evans praised the agencies that contributed to this investigation, which was a coordinated effort among federal and state law enforcement authorities within the Louisiana Financial Crimes Task Force. The Task Force includes representatives from the U.S. Secret Service, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office, the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Department, and the New Orleans Police Department. U.S. Attorney Evans thanked the U.S. Secret Service Oklahoma City Field Office and the Midwest City, OK Police Department for their assistance. Assistant United States Attorney Matthew Payne is in charge of the prosecution.