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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, December 11, 2014

Tampa Man Sentenced For Credit Card Fraud

Tampa, Florida – United States District Judge Susan C. Bucklew has sentenced Noel Perez Partagas (22, Tampa) to three years and three months in federal prison for access device fraud and identity theft. The Court also ordered him to pay more than $46,000 in restitution, and entered a forfeiture money judgment of nearly $24,000, representing the proceeds of the charged criminal conduct.  

According to court documents, Partagas used stolen credit and debit account numbers that had been transformed into counterfeit or cloned credit cards. He purchased large quantities of fuel and tires, among other things, that could later be sold for cash. The true owners of these accounts remained in possession of the cards and did not know that their information had been stolen.

Partagas was arrested in July 2013, after he used a fraudulent credit card to purchase $100 of diesel fuel at a gas station in Polk County. At the time of his arrest, he was driving a pickup truck with a large custom “bladder tank” in the bed, used to hold large quantities of fuel.  Partagas had in his possession 69 credit cards and 20 gift cards, most of which had been re-encoded. Further investigation revealed that he had used the fraudulent cards to purchase nearly $42,000 worth of tires from two tire retailers in the Lakeland area in May 2013.

The credit card companies suffered losses of more than $46,000 in this case, with potential losses totaling nearly $350,000.

This case was investigated by the United States Secret Service, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, the Tampa Police Department, and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Kelley C. Howard-Allen.

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Updated January 26, 2015