Romanian Man is 12th Defendant Sentenced in ATM Skimming Conspiracy

LOS ANGELES – The 12th man convicted in an ATM skimming scheme has been sentenced to nearly four years in prison.

Oliver Raducu Marian, 37, of Romania, was sentenced yesterday to 46 months in federal prison by United States District Otis D. Wright III. In addition to the prison term, Judge Wright ordered Marian to pay restitution of $799,978.

Marian pleaded guilty in December to conspiracy to commit bank fraud. According to court documents, the conspiracy began as early as November 2012 and continued to October 2013. The conspirators, all Romanian nationals, attached skimming devices and video cameras to ATM machines and vestibules in Los Angeles and Orange Counties, the San Francisco area, and Las Vegas. The equipment was used to capture the customers’ debit card numbers and PIN numbers.

The defendants then downloaded the stolen information to blank cards and withdrew money from the accounts. Over the course of the scheme, the conspirators stole approximately $800,000 in cash from approximately 3,468 victims. The cash was spent on apartments and storage units.

“Although this defendant had fled the United States, U.S. law enforcement in cooperation with foreign law enforcement was able to bring him back to face judgment,” said United States Attorney Eileen M. Decker. “International borders do not deter the Department of Justice from prosecuting those who commit crimes against the U.S.”

“Cases like this remind us that we should be extra cautions when using our debit cards and cover the keypad when entering our pin numbers,” said Deirdre Fike, the Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office. “Anyone with information as to the whereabouts of fugitive, Ioan Claudiu Buculei, is urged to contact the FBI.”

Marian, who was extradited back to the United States from the United Kingdom, was the 12th member of the conspiracy to be sentenced. The other defendants, all Romanian nationals, who have been sentenced by Judge Wright are:

· Gheorghita Vlasin, age 30, sentenced to 51 months;

· Petru Olteanu-Ursachi, age 40, sentenced to 46 months;

· Bogdan Ciuchi, age 31, sentenced to 46 months;

· Codrin Marian Lupu, age 43, sentenced to 72 months (extradited from Romania);

· Adrian Saran, age 41, sentenced to 57 months;

· Marius Robert Manciu, age 32, sentenced to 46 months;

· Roman Florin, age 35, sentenced to 46 months;

· Vasile Gabrial Branisteanu, age 35, sentenced to 46 months;

· Cotovanu Claudiu-Dumitriu, age 35, sentenced to 70 months;

· Dumitru Marios Calian, age 36, sentenced to 46 months; and

· Vasilica-Iulian Fuioaga, age 39, sentenced to 63 months.

The 13th man charged in the investigation, Ioan Claudiu Buculei, age 39, of Romania, remains a fugitive.

This investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Los Angeles Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Tracy L. Wilkison, Chief of the Cyber and Intellectual Property Crimes Section.

USAO – California, Central Updated February 23, 2017

Central District of California DOJ / 17-040 / February 23, 2017

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