Ottumwa Man Sentenced for Credit Card Skimming Operation

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An Ottumwa man has been sentenced for his role in a credit card skimming operation he took part in last year.

36-year-old Erlian Arias Gonzalez pleaded guilty to illegal use of a scanning device, a Class D felony. Gonzalez was given a five-year suspended sentence to be placed on five years of probation. A separate charge of ongoing criminal conduct is still pending.

The Mount Pleasant Police Department says Gonzalez and 57-year-old Juan Manuel Almenares Morales conducted a credit card skimming operation at a local gas station. The pair used three skimming devices in total which were found in May 2021.

Authorities say after the skimming devices were discovered, a search warrant was executed at an Ottumwa residence. A credit card reader, notes with card numbers, and three illegally purchased gift cards were found.

Almenares Morales was also charged with illegal use of a scanning device and ongoing criminal conduct. His trial has been scheduled for April 12th.

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