Originally published Tuesday, May 14, 2019 at 03:08p.m.

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — A state grand jury has indicted six men alleged of running an illegal credit card gas skimming ring in the Phoenix area. They’ve been charged with fraudulent schemes and artifices, conspiracy, illegally conducting an enterprise, computer tampering, organized retail theft and taking the identity of another person.

Their alleged participation involved a scheme to purchase diesel fuel for resale with stolen credit card information between April 11, 2018 and December 20, 2018, according to the Arizona Attorney General’s Office.

The investigation was performed by the Arizona Department of Transportation Office of Inspector General in partnership with the Kroger Company Organized Retail Crime Team and the Attorney General’s Office.

In February 2018, ADOT detectives discovered tractor trailers at a private storage lot being fueled from hidden auxiliary fuel tanks contained on the trucks. The investigation identified several individuals and seven load vehicles with auxiliary fuel tanks allegedly involved in the scheme.

The individuals are accused of obtaining stolen credit card information which was encoded onto a new card, and then used the card at the pump to purchase fuel. The indictment alleges that on 31 separate occasions, the enterprise used the credit card information of about 40 different people at 12 different gas stations in the Phoenix area including Circle K, Fry’s Fuel, Shell and QuickTrip.

So far in 2019, 40 skimmers have been found in Arizona fuel dispensers and reported to the Arizona Department of Agriculture Weights and Measures.

Six of those were found in Prescott and one was in Prescott Valley at the following locations on the following dates:

Three at the Chevron at the intersection of Willow Creek Road and Smoke Tree Lane in Prescott April 1.

One at the Texaco at the intersection of Sheldon St. and Arizona Avenue April 2.

One at the Circle K at the intersection of Highway 69 and Prescott East Highway April 9.

Two at the Good 2 Go at the intersection of Willow Creek Road and Willow Lake Road on April 10.

Two were found in Flagstaff at the following locations:

One was found December 2016 at Butler Ave and Lucky Lane and another December 2017 at U.S. 89 and Kaitlin Way.

If you believe your credit card has been compromised, the Federal Trade Commission recommends reporting it to your bank or card issuer. Federal law limits consumers’ liability if their credit, ATM, or debit card is lost or stolen, but the liability coverage may depend on how quickly the loss or theft is reported.

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