LEE COUNTY, Fla.- On Sunday, September 18, 2011, members of the Lee County Sheriff's Office Highway Interdiction Unit teamed up with ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), to conduct an operation on I-75 targeting criminals utilizing the Interstate. At approximately 9:30 pm, a Detective and ICE HSI Agent on patrol with the interdiction team conducted a traffic stop of a 2005 BMW 745I traveling southbound near MM 141 for traffic violations. The occupants were traveling from Tampa to Fort Myers, Florida.
The detective proceeded to check the validity of the driver's operator's license and issue a written warning, during which time he observed indicators of criminal activity. The driver had an extensive history for credit card cloning and the vehicle was filled with thousands of dollars in recently purchased property, which is common with criminal organizations involved in identity theft and credit card cloning.
A search of the vehicle resulted in the discovery of (20) cloned credit cards along with a computer and magnetic card writer utilized to manufacture them. The recovered cloned credit cards have an approximate value of $160,000 in potential losses if they were used as intended. The 2005 BMW 745I was determined to have no lien and was seized for forfeiture proceedings (photos attached).
Arrested in connection with the case are: Yudeisy Pedrozo, 26, and Jose J. Hernandez, 32, both of 3540 Everglades Boulevard North, Naples, Florida. They are charged as follows:
Trafficking in cloned credit cards 10 or more
Possession of a cloned / counterfeit credit card (20 counts)
Possession of manufacturing equipment to produce counterfeit credit cards
The investigation is continuing into other potential victims and skimmed accounts. Additional local charges are pending and ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) will be pursuing federal charges.
Inmate photos and additional information are available on the Sheriff’s Office website at www.sheriffleefl.org under Arrest & Inmates / Search Lee County Arrests.