Man and Woman Arrested in Centerville as Part of Multi-State Pickpocketing Scheme

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A man and woman were arrested after police say the two worked in concert to rob an elderly person in Centerville last year and used a stolen credit card to make numerous fraudulent transactions–a scheme the pair have committed in multiple states.

On June 5, 2023, court records say 37-year-old Eugen Pribegeanu and 30-year-old Andreaa Agapi picked the pocket of a 78-year-old man at the Walmart in Centerville. After taking the man’s wallet, the two suspects took the victim’s Visa card and used it to make multiple transactions totaling nearly $6,000.

Authorities say these transactions involved the suspects taking money out of the victim’s Visa card and laundering the money to gift cards. There was also $400 in the victim’s wallet that the couple stole.

According to law enforcement, Pribegeanu and Agapi have performed the same pickpocket scheme to rob elderly individuals in numerous locations in Iowa such as Ottumwa, Carroll, and Iowa City. The pair is also accused of committing robberies in Illinois, Missouri, and Texas.

A warrant for Pribegeanu and Agapi’s arrest was issued on July 26, 2023. The pair was arrested on April 30, 2024.

Pribegeanu and Agapi have each been charged with money laundering (Class C felony), second-degree theft against an older individual (Class C felony), conspiracy to commit a nonforcible felony (Class D felony), and unauthorized use of a credit card (Class D felony).

Both suspects are currently lodged in the Appanoose County Jail. The bail for each of them has been set for $30,000.

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