TAMPA — Authorities said Tuesday they have charged a 58-year-old man with identity theft and possession of stolen credit cards after a three-month investigation revealed a sophisticated operation.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement said Idalberto Fleites-Cepero, 58, of 10118 Enchanted Oaks Court in Town 'N Country, stole people's credit card information and then made cards for himself with his name and their card numbers.
Clearwater police first spotted Fleites-Cepero's scam when he used one of the cards at a drug store in that jurisdiction, according to the FDLE.
When Clearwater police discovered the case spanned several counties, the agency brought in the FDLE.
Four agencies searched Fleites-Cepero's home Monday and seized stolen credit card information, counterfeit credit cards, blank credit cards and information related to the purchase of credit card making equipment, the FDLE said.
Fleites-Cepero was charged with three counts of identity theft, three counts of possession of forged counterfeit credit cards, two counts of fraudulent use of credit cards and two counts of grand theft.
Fleites-Cepero was booked into the Hillsborough County Jail on Monday and released Tuesday morning after posting $22,000 bail.
Investigators are working on finding out how he obtained the stolen credit card information.