Jersey man charged in credit card fraud scam beginning in Liberty

Yosiel Linares

MONTICELLO – A Union, New Jersey man has been arrested in connection with a wide-ranging credit card fraud scheme.

  On January 18, 2023, a Parksville resident contacted the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office to report that a fraudulent $296 charge for fuel was made to his credit card at a Mirabito gas station in Norwich, NY. 

Working with the Chenango County Sheriff, the Madison County Sheriff, and the State Police, deputies were able to identify a man driving a red Volvo tractor-trailer with a disguised tank mounted in the bed of the semi-trailer.

The investigation revealed that the complainant’s credit card number had been copied in the Liberty, NY area and then re-written to a gift card which was used by the thief. The suspect would go to gas stations that did not yet have chip readers on their pumps and swipe the counterfeit cards containing the stolen credit card numbers using the card’s magnetic stripe.

The suspect reportedly pumped thousands of gallons of diesel fuel which was then transported to the state of New Jersey where it was apparently sold on the black market. 

In February, sheriff’s detectives identified the suspect as Yosiel Linares, 30, of Union, NJ and obtained a warrant for his arrest. Soon after, the suspect was arrested by Union Township Police as a fugitive from justice. On March 2, 2023, Linares was extradited from New Jersey to Sullivan County and arraigned in the Town of Liberty Court. 

Under the New York bail reform laws, Linares was released on his own recognizance pending a future court date. The sheriff’s office is working with the other law enforcement agencies to identify other suspects that may be involved in this case. The investigation is continuing.