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Electronic Gas Pump Skimmer Gets 20 Years

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FORT WORTH (AP) – A judge in Fort Worth has sentenced a man identified as a member of a California-based gang of electronic thieves to 20 years in prison for putting devices inside gasoline pumps to steal customers’ debit and credit card information.

Aleksandr Goukasian was convicted in June of several charges, including unlawful use of electronic communications and possessing an intercept device.

Tarrant County prosecutors say the 53-year-old was among several from a Glendale, Calif., ring who placed their “skimmers” in pumps in Mojave, Calif., Las Vegas, Dallas, Houston and Fort Worth to amass 38,000 card numbers and passwords. Customers were bilked of $280,000.

Goukasian’s sentence, imposed Monday, runs concurrently with a six-month federal sentence for a related conviction. He becomes parole eligible in seven years.

Two partners are awaiting trial in Houston.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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