Two suspects are in custody after allegedly tampering with a gas pump and attempting to attach a skimming device at a City of Goleta gas station. At about 4:45 p.m., yesterday June 23, 2018, a citizen near the Valero Gas station in the 5600 block of Calle Real reported to Sheriff’s Dispatch that two subjects were tampering with a gas pump and the attached credit card reader. The reporting party told dispatchers that the subjects were seen driving away in a U-Haul rental van that had the license plate removed, the U-Haul serial number covered with tape, and the side and rear windows covered with brown paper. That van was last seen entering the northbound freeway from the Fairview onramp.
A responding deputy located the van and conducted a traffic enforcement stop. The vehicle exited the freeway, continued for a short distance, and then yielded in a parking lot in the 6400 block of Calle Real. It was quickly determined that the two male suspects in the van were involved with tampering of the gas pump. Deputies ordered the suspects out of the van and two men were detained in the back of patrol cars. Because the deputies could not clearly see inside the cargo van, the rear windows were shattered out using a 40MM impact sponge round. The vehicle was then cleared and no other persons were found inside. While searching the vehicle, deputies located several pieces of equipment used for “Skimming” or illegally collecting data off the magnetic stripe on credit cards when used at payment terminals like those found on gas station pumps.
24-year-old Harutyun Shahinyan of Los Angeles California, and 30-year-old Carlos Lemus of Port Orchard Washington, were both booked at Santa Barbara County Jail on suspicion of violations of California Penal Code Section § 502.6 – Possession of a scanning device with the intent to defraud, California Penal Code Section § 484d – Credit card fraud, and a violation 18 U.S. Code Section § 1029 – Fraud and related activity in connection with access devices. Both are being held without bail.
Update by edhat staff
Two men were arrested on Saturday for allegedly installing credit card skimmers at local gas pumps.
Witnesses called 911 before 5:00 p.m. reporting two men in a U-Haul van at the Valero gas stations on Calle Real in Goleta. Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Deputies found the U-Haul traveling north on Highway 101. The van was missing a license plate and its windows were covered. The driver refused to yield, exited the freeway, and finally pulled over in the parking lot of the 6400 block of Calle Real, reports KEYT News.
An edhat reader reported the occupants inside the van were being held at gunpoint by Deputies.
KEYT further reports 24-year-old, Harutyun Shahinyan of Los Angeles and 30-year-old, Carlos Lemus of Port Orchard, Washington were arrested and are being held without bail after deputies found several pieces of equipment used for “skimming” or illegally collecting data off the magnetic stripe on credit cards.
By an edhat reader
At least 10 police/highway patrol cars. Road shut down. Police with guns pointed at a Uhaul van in the industrial park on the corner. It’s right behind Captain Fatty’s. We were headed for a beer, but the police wouldn’t let us in.