Acting U.S. Attorney Michelle M. Baeppler announced that Charles E. Smith, Jr., 52, of Woodmere, Ohio, pleaded guilty on May 19, 2022, to an Information charging him with one count of access device fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft.
According to court documents, from May 2019 through May 2020, Smith purchased stolen credit and debit card account information, including account numbers and addresses, off of the dark web. Smith then used a credit card reader encoder/writer to program that information onto blank cards and used those cards to make fraudulent purchases of gasoline at various gas stations in Northern Ohio. Court records state that Smith purchased the gasoline to fuel vehicles used to deliver packages for Amazon.
In total, court documents state that Smith purchased at least $10,621.23 in gasoline using over 100 stolen debit and credit card accounts. After his arrest, investigators later determined that Smith had purchased more than 600 stolen debit and credit card accounts from the dark web, affecting victims in 25 states.
Smith is scheduled to be sentenced on August 25, 2022. Smith faces a mandatory minimum sentence of two years in prison and a maximum of twelve.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Secret Service and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Payum Doroodian.