YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: South Hackensack police and Bergen County Prosecutor’s investigators cracked a bogus credit-card mill with the arrest this morning of a 25-year-old man who they said bought genuine numbers from thieves who skimmed them from unsuspecting customers.
Thomas Mesa (a/k/a Thomas Mesa-Jiminez) of Calicooneck Road in South Hackensack is being held on $100,000 bail in the Bergen County Jail.Thomas Mesa (MUGSHOT: Bergen Prosecutor)
Mesa was manufacturing the fraudulent cards “using credit card numbers from third parties who had no knowledge that their credit card information had been compromised,” Bergen County Prosecutor John L. Molinelli said.
The victims made ordinary purchases with their cards at certain businesses where the numbers were swiped, the prosecutor said.
Mesa paid the thieves for the numbers, he said.
Members of Molinelli’s White Collar Crimes Squad found “numerous pieces of credit card making equipment and credit card skimming devices … along with blank credit card materials” during a search of Mesa’s second-floor apartment, the prosecutor said.
They also turned up hundreds of fake cards in Mesa’s name and the names of others, he said.
Mesa is charged with theft, identity theft and trafficking personal information of another. He’s due for a first appearance in Bergen County Central Municipal Court in Hackensack on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, the investigation is continuing, Molinelli said.
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