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Four Cubans indicted in identity theft

Four Cuban citizens originally arrested in Western New York in late January were indicted Wednesday by a federal grand jury in Buffalo for alleged aggravated identity theft, conspiracy to commit bank fraud and credit card crimes.

Eduardo Hernandez Quinones, 46, and Yasser Carrillo Chartrand, 23, were charged in one indictment as fraud coconspirators and Claudia Diaz Diaz, 21, and Yaily Santurio, 31, were charged in a separate indictment as fraud coconspirators.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Russell T. Ippolito Jr. said the four are accused of fraudulently obtaining credit and debit card numbers of a number of people and encoding counterfeit cards with that information. They then used the counterfeit cards to buy items at stores throughout Western New York, including Sears, Macy’s and Marshall’s. Ippolito said the two men and two women are also accused of using counterfeit credit and debit cards to purchase gasoline at area gas stations and reselling that gasoline to others for cash.

The four, all of them legally in the United States, were recently arrested in DeWitt, N.Y., and are facing similar state criminal charges, according to U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. The indictments are the result of a joint probe by the New York State Police, the U.S. Secret Service and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Administration.