Two Miami men were arrested in the early morning hours after they were caught putting a credit card skimming device on a gas station pump.
Sgt. Nick Whiteman was on patrol at 3 a.m. when he passed by the Valero gas station in Marathon and saw a car parked at the gas pumps. The station was closed, all the lights were off. He was suspicious because a number of credit card skimming devices have been found installed in gas pumps at various locations in Monroe County.
He pulled in to the station, behind the car. He noticed the car’s license tag was bent so it could not be read. The car began to pull away from the pumps and he turned on his overhead lights to stop it from leaving.
Sgt. Whiteman made contact with the two men in the car, identified as Alberto Fombellida-Manso and Pavel Morejon-Martinez, both Miami residents. He called for backup officers to assist. Deputies Garrett Bragg, Vincent Torres and Debra Johnson arrived, followed shortly by Deputy Annette Simo.
The two men were placed in the back of Deputy Simo’s patrol car while the investigation continued into what they were doing there. An examination of the gas pumps revealed one of them appeared to have been tampered with. The owners of the gas station were notified and responded along with Detective Amanda Coleman.
Once the owners arrived, the pumps were all opened and inspected. A credit card skimming device was found installed inside one of the pumps – the one closest to where the two men’s car had been parked. The two men were removed from the patrol car and a second skimming device was found shoved down into the back seat where one of them had been sitting.
Both men were arrested. They were charged with using a credit card skimming device to commit fraud and with loitering; Manso was also charged with tampering with evidence. They were booked into jail.