Last week, a Maryland man was convicted of running a credit card skimming ring that operated in Maryland, Virginia and Pennsylvania from 2010 to 2011.
Authorities say the ring victimized hundreds of people and businesses by stealing credit card numbers, using those numbers to buy gift cards and merchandise, then returning the merchandise for cash. In some cases, the credit card numbers were stolen when restaurant servers, paid by the ring, ran customer credit cards through a “skimming” device that recorded each number.
The case against the now-convicted ringleader, 33-year-old Olubunmi Oladapo Komolafe, began building in Arlington.
According to an affidavit, a co-conspirator of Komolafe was stopped and questioned by police at an Arlington Macy’s store on January 30, 2010. The co-conspirator was attempting to make a purchase at Macy’s using gift cards that had been either re-encoded or purchased using a stolen credit number, according to the affidavit.
Eventually the suspect was let go, but he surrendered several gift cards to officers. From there, ACPD detectives began an investigation that eventually led to a U.S. Secret Service investigation and a federal case against Komolafe and four other men, including the co-conspirator who was initially stopped in Arlington.