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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Seventh Member Of “Manche Boy Mafia” Gang Sentenced To Six Years In Credit Card Fraud Scheme

Tampa, FL – U.S. District Judge James S. Moody, Jr. today sentenced Johnnie Earl Ross (24, Tampa) to six years in federal prison for conspiracy to commit credit card fraud and aggravated identity theft. He pleaded guilty on February 8, 2018.

According to court documents and statements made in open court, from at least January 2015, through November 2016, Ross and others affiliated with the “Manche Boy Mafia” or “MBM” organization conspired to commit credit card fraud and identity theft in the Tampa Bay area. To facilitate the scheme, the conspirators purchased stolen credit and debit card account numbers online from various websites, some of which used bitcoins as their currency. They then purchased or stole reloadable gift cards and used machines to emboss the stolen account numbers and their own names onto the front of these altered gift cards, thereby producing counterfeit credit cards. The conspirators then used these counterfeit cards at various retailers around the Tampa Bay area to purchase gift cards and electronics, which they either kept or sold for cash. 

Investigators determined that these individuals had engaged in hundreds of successful transactions with counterfeit credit cards, and had possessed and used thousands of stolen account numbers from individuals across the United States. In total, Ross was held responsible for more than $540,000 in intended or attempted purchases with counterfeit credit cards and stolen account information.

This case was investigated by the FBI and the Tampa Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mandy Riedel.

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Identity Theft
Component(s): 
Updated April 26, 2018