TRENTON, NJ – A Romanian national was sentenced Wednesday to 60 months in prison for his role in a conspiracy to steal bank account information from thousands of customers by installing secret card-reading devices and pinhole cameras on ATMs throughout New Jersey and elsewhere, according to Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig.
Adrian Fichidiu, 37, previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. U.S. District Judge Peter G. Sheridan imposed the sentence by videoconference Wednesday.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court, Fichidiu admitted he was part of an “ATM skimming” scheme that stole bank account information by installing hidden card-reading devices on ATMs throughout northern and central New Jersey.
Fichidiu previously acknowledged that he and his conspirators created bank cards using the fraudulently obtained account information, which they used to unlawfully withdraw large amounts of cash from various ATMs. The scheme, which involved actual and attempted losses exceeding $1.5 million dollars, impacted over 1,000 bank customers, according to documents filed in this case and statements made in court.
In addition to the prison term, Judge Sheridan sentenced Fichidiu to five years of supervised release and ordered him to pay restitution that will be finalized at a later date.