Two visitors from Romania accumulated a 70-count indictment for reconfiguring Dunkin' Donuts gift cards to act as credit cards, The New York Times reports.
Daniel Gheorghe and Ionel Cristian Popa swindled more than $17,000 from a Chase bank in Queens, New York, by altering the gift cards to be read as bank-issued cards. In total, the pair fraudulently utilized 66 separate cards to pull off the heist. They used Chase ATMs "as their own personal slot machine," Richard A. Brown, Queens district attorney, told the news source. The men traveled to the U.S. on journalism visas. While it's still unknown how the accused accessed customer bank account information without proper identity authentication
, it was found that none of the 16-digit vendor account codes on the gift cards matched the encoded information on their magnetic strips. The numbers were allegedly pulled from registered bank accounts at financial institutions such as Chase, Bank of America, Citibank and HSBC. The Herald Sun reports that the pair face up to seven years in prison, and are currently being held on $150,000 bail.