Romanian ATM Skimming Crew Heading to Prison


Regarding Constantin, he pleads guilty to aggravated identity theft. For his crime, he receives a mandatory two years in prison. As for Muraretu, he receives a thirty-seven month sentence for his conviction on the conspiracy charge.

At the hearing, Ciobanu acknowledges his grave mistake. Unfortunately for Ciobanu, however, it appears as though he is a habitual “mistake maker.” Accordingly, when the judge hands down Ciobanu’s prison sentence, he notes that Ciobanu committs one crime after another, after another. Specifically, the judge reminds Ciobanu of his “mistakes” in Pennsylvania, Virginia, Texas and then California. “You did not just make a mistake. This was not just a matter of you bumping into someone,” said the judge. “You claim you are a good man – but this is not the mark of a good man.”

Mechanics of The Romanian Trio

In each state, the co-conspirators use card skimmers to steal ATM card numbers as customers insert their cards into the machines. Further, they use hidden cameras to record customers as they enter the ATM PIN numbers. With the stolen data, the Romanian trio then make their own fake ATM cards. Shortly thereafter, the criminal team utilizes the fake cards and stolen PINs to withdraw nearly $400,000 from customer accounts.