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Police arrest two in ATM skimming racket

Bengaluru: Police arrested two Ugandan students here for installing skimming equipment and micro cameras at ATM kiosks and withdrawing money using stolen data and duplicate credit/debit cards. 

The accused have been identified as Babalanda Amunon (25), a resident of Kothanur, and Ongido Ambrose (22), a resident of MS Palya.

Both are from Kampala in Uganda.

Police said that another accused, Mariyam is absconding and they are in a lookout for the accused. 

Police have seized two laptops, two storage devices, four skimmer plates, micro cameras, nine mobile phones, 20 ATM cards, 160 duplicate cards, a two-wheeler and Rs 60,000 from them. The two are said to have withdrawn Rs 25 lakh through skimming.  

Babalanda is studying pharmacy in a private college near Hennur while Ongido is pursuing BCA in Vidyaranyapura. The duo stays with friend Mariyam in Kothanur. 

The police revealed that, the accused who lived together used to go around the city identifying ATMs to instal the skimming device. They would take out memory cards with details of debit/credit cards and use the data to make online transactions and also withdraw money by using duplicate credit/debit cards.

At some ATMs, the duo had installed cameras to the roofs which looked like smoke detectors. 

The two were inside an ATM kiosk near Hegde Nagar on August 28 when the Kothanur police, who were on night patrol, spotted them. Upon interrogation, they confessed that they were trying to instal a skimming machine. 

The accused told the police that they had installed skimming machines at ATMs in MS Palya, Hegde Nagar, Kothanur Main Road and Geddalahalli. Police also said the duo had withdrawn Rs 25 lakh through skimming. They had committed similar crimes in Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra.

A complaint was lodged by S Naveen in June 2017 with Kothanur police, saying somebody had withdrawn Rs 21,000 from his account. The investigation revealed that the same gang was behind the crime. 

Within seconds of stealing his credit card details, the accused had withdrawn money thrice. 

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