2 Plead Guilty to Skimming IDs for Fake Cards

By: ap
By: ap

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) -- A Bulgarian man and a Florida woman have pleaded guilty in Birmingham to skimming bank customers' identification at ATMs across the South and using the information to create more than 300 counterfeit credit and debit cards.

Federal officials said 41-year-old Antonio Velikov and 35-year-old Mariana Pashova pleaded guilty to bank fraud, possession of counterfeit cards, and aggravated identity theft.

Prosecutors said the fraud cost the Bank of America more than $862,000, which the two must repay.

Hoover police arrested the two in May 2011 as they attempted to place a camouflaged skimmer on a bank ATM.

They recovered $50,000 in cash and skimmer equipment from their hotel room.

Prosecutors said the two were working with a group that placed skimmers in Alabama, North Carolina, Florida, Virginia, Tennessee and South Carolina.

AP-WF-06-27-12 0931GMT

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