Skip to main content
Press Release

Yanier Tellez Sentenced To 70 Months For Conspiracy, Bank Fraud, And Aggravated Identity Theft

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Tennessee

GREENEVILLE, Tenn. – On September 29, 2022, Yanier Tellez, 32, currently of Tampa, Florida, was sentenced to 70 months in federal prison by the Honorable Clifton L. Corker, in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee at Greeneville. 

Tellez, a citizen of Cuba, previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and aggravated identity theft in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 371, bank fraud in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1344, and aggravated identity theft in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1028A.  Tellez was ordered to pay $39,899.97 in restitution, and he will be on supervised release for three years following his release from prison.    

According to court records, in November 2017, Tellez and a previously sentenced coconspirator, Lazaro Quintana Martinez, 26, of Tampa, Florida, travelled to East Tennessee from Tampa, Florida to commit identity theft.  The two used one or more skimming devices to collect account numbers and personal identifying information from unsuspecting customers.  A skimming device was installed at a local business and would collect the credit and debit card numbers and other personal identifying information from customers who used the machine when making purchases.  Once Tellez and Martinez obtained the account numbers and other information from the skimming device, they would re-encode that information onto magnetic-stripe cards such as prepaid gift cards and use the fraudulent cards to obtain cash, purchase money orders, and purchase gift cards at local ATM machines and local point of sale terminals throughout East Tennessee.  Local store surveillance footage captured them committing their crimes, including footage from local Walgreens, CVS, and Kroger stores.

Upon return to Florida, Tellez was stopped for a traffic violation in Lee County, and he had thumb drives containing over 300 account numbers and corresponding customer information.  According to court records, the average yield for each compromised account number was over $1,400 in fraudulent transactions.  When stopped, Tellez also had a counterfeit gift card in his wallet that contained the account information of a resident of Greeneville, Tennessee, who banked with Eastman Credit Union.  That card had the handwritten zip code for Greeneville on the back of the card.

Martinez previously pled guilty to the conspiracy and aggravated identity theft and was sentenced to 24 months in prison in the Eastern District of Tennessee.  He was also sentenced to 51 months in prison in the Middle District of Florida for additional identity theft offenses.

Eastman Credit Union, a local financial institution that discovered fraudulent transactions, suffered actual losses from the scheme of $39,899.97.      

The criminal indictment was the result of an investigation by the United States Secret Service, the Johnson City Police Department, the Kingsport Police Department, and the Lee County, Florida Sheriff’s Office.  The investigation was led by United States Secret Service Senior Special Agent Thomas R. Whitehead.

Assistant United States Attorney Mac D. Heavener, III represented the United States.




Rachelle Barnes
Public Affairs Officer
(865) 545-4167

Updated September 29, 2022

Financial Fraud
Identity Theft