Global Credit Card Fraud Ring Busted, 105 Suspects Arrested
A months-long investigation that spanned from Malaysia to 14 European countries resulted last week in the bust of a credit card fraud ring allegedly responsible for approximately €5 million (US$5.5 million) in losses. The police investigation led to the arrest of 105 suspects, 29 in Malaysia and 76 in Europe. The bust uncovered two sites where illegal cards were manufactured, and house searches netted 3,000 counterfeit payment cards, fake passports, cameras, jewelry and cash.
The crime ring, based in Malaysia, manufactured credit cards that were primarily used to buy high-ticket items at electronics stores and expensive jewelry at European airport duty-free shops, according to Europol’s European Cybercrime Center, which was involved in the investigation. Europol, based in The Hague, the Netherlands, works with law enforcement in European Union member states, as well as the U.S., Australia, Canada and Norway. The European countries involved in the investigation were Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Germany, Denmark, Spain, France, Croatia, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway and the U.K.
American Express was credited with its support of the investigation, but details were scant. “We unfortunately can’t go into the details of the investigation because some of the investigations are ongoing in member states and we can’t tell you to what extent and in what ways American Express was involved,” a Europol spokesperson tells Paybefore.