92ºF

2 Colombian men charged with credit card fraud

St. Johns County deputies find 64 cards, $11,000 cash in suspects' rental car

St. Johns County Sheriff's Office booking photos of Jorge Mendez-Sarta and Miyer Proveda-Amaya
St. Johns County Sheriff's Office booking photos of Jorge Mendez-Sarta and Miyer Proveda-Amaya

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. – Two Colombian men who were seen using several credit cards to withdraw large amounts of cash on Friday evening were arrested and charged with 43 counts of possession of counterfeit credit cards and grand theft, according to the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office.

According to the Sheriff's Office, Lt. Michael Strausbaugh was told by a citizen at the Racetrac store on State Road 16 just off Interstate 95 that he became suspicious because the two men were referring to a ledger that contained numbers of what appeared to be credit card numbers and dollar amounts.

Financial Crimes Detective Joshua Buck, an agent from the U.S. Secret Service and an interpreter responded to continue the investigation. Investigators said they found numerous credit and gift cards that were thrown into nearby bushes. In addition, a search of the rental car that the pair was using turned up 64 credit or gift cards. Of those 43 were later determined to have been re-encoded by the suspects using stolen bank account information, authorities said. 

Investigators said they also found $11,000 in U.S. currency, over $12,400 in money orders and $175 in unopened gift cards in the car.

Jorge Enrique Mendez-Sarta, 36, and Miyer Hamilton Poveda-Amaya, 37, both listing an Orlando address, were booked into the County Jail with bonds set of $112,500.

Detectives said the investigation is continuing.