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Crooks use their own names on credit card applications to scam discount stores

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Posted at 7:25 PM, Dec 20, 2013
and last updated 2013-12-20 19:25:16-05

Two thieves using their actual names on credit card applications, managed to rip off almost two dozen popular discount stores before anyone caught on to their scam.

Officials caught surveillance photos of two brazen thieves at a Sam`s Club.

They filled out credit application forms using the names of legitimate businesses and included themselves as users on the account.

They had photos taken of themselves and used their actual names and personal information.

“The most unique thing is essentially how stupid the bad guys were,” says Carla Menendez, US Postal Inspector

The suspects were buying high ticket items like TV`s, laptops and iPads then selling them.

Postal inspectors say it wasn`t hard to catch up with this duo once Sam`S Club fraud investigators tipped them off.

“Going in and allowing their own picture taken in a SAMS club allowing their own personal information to open these accounts thinking they are just going to get away with it,” says Menendez.

They did 'get away' with it for a little while, and that time gap is exactly what the suspects counted on.

They would usually use an account for two weeks then move on.

“Most of these business were very large businesses, therefore they make a lot of money and a lot of purchases,” says Menendez.

In all, there were 21 companies impacted and tens of thousands of dollars in losses.

Inspectors say most of the companies were unaware of the charges.

“Purchasing a computer, laptop is related to their business and wouldn`t make them question it unless someone brought it to their attention,” says Menendez.

Inspectors say their advice to businesses applies to everyone--always check bank statements and “Check your credit every yea,” says Menendez.

Both suspects in this case were sentenced to 12 to 15 months in prison.