French duo arrested on ATM fraud charges

Friday, 25 February 2011 From Issue Vol. XIX No. 8 By  Boonlua Chatree

Four foreigners made reports to the police that they had been swindled by foreigners who had stolen money from their bank accounts through ATM machines. The total sum of the losses of these four complainants was about 1 million baht.

Staff at the SCB bank exchange booth in Central Pattaya reported to police that they saw two suspicious persons trying to withdraw money from the ATM machine there.

Alexandre Giro Zinno and Ali Ennouri have been arrested for ATM fraud. Alexandre Giro Zinno and Ali Ennouri have been arrested for ATM fraud.

Police came and searched the two suspicious figures and found a card skimmer device, one ATM card and 100,000 baht in cash, allegedly withdrawn illegally from a victim’s bank account.

Two Frenchmen were arrested for allegedly cloning automated teller machine cards and robbing unsuspecting tourists of large sums of money from their bank accounts.

Alexandre Giro Zinno, 29, and Ali Ennouri, 28, were taken into custody at an ATM at the entrance to Soi 9 on Beach Road Feb. 15.

Zinno and Ennouri denied charges they’d copied card numbers and personal identification card numbers to the skimmer, which could then be inserted into an ATM to withdraw cash under the victim’s account. They then refused to make any statement to police. Armed with security camera footage from several ATMs, police charged the pair with possession of counterfeiting tools before detaining them for further investigation.

Police urged the public to remember to refuse offers from strangers asking to assist with making ATM withdrawals and to guard PINs and other private data.

Police believe that there are at least 4-5 ATM scam gang members, who queue up at ATM machines and pretend to be of assistance to the person in front of them, but in fact are working their dirty tricks to copy the victims’ ATM cards.

Police have identified the other gang members and have reliable information that they are in Phuket. They have requested the immigration police to look out for them in case they decide to escape from the country before police are able to arrest them.

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