The man, Oleksandr Volvach, 38, was arrested after he was identified withdrawing funds from an ATM in Krabi at 10:47pm on Sunday, June 3, Krabi Provincial Police announced yesterday (June 11), as reported by Ch 3 News (see here).
Police believe Volvach was working with two other individuals, who police have yet to name and yet to apprehend.
Police were first alerted to the skimming swindle by Siam Commercial Bank head office, which coordinated with inspectors from Krabi Provincial Police to track down and arrest Volvach, Krabi Police Commander Maj Gen Bunthawee Toraksa explained.
Officers then brought Volvach to his house at the high-end Ananda Lake View residential estate in Tambon Thepkrasattri, Thalang, where they seized as evidence 50 fake ATM cards as well as devices for recording and encoding electronic information to and from ATM cards.
Police also seized B7,000 and US$502 dollars in cash, as well as small denominations in other currencies.
Gen Bunthawee explained that Volvach and his two alleged accomplices came to Thailand four years ago. They later rented land and bought two large houses, together valued at about B18mn.
“These robbers had been stealing information from cards with new and small electronic devices while cameras recorded people entering their PIN codes. These devices were installed on ATMs all over Phuket,” Gen Boonthawee said.
However, it was also not reported exactly which ATMs had the skimming devices fitted to them.
After the information was obtained, it was transferred onto fake cards and withdrawals made by members of the gang, Gen Boonthawee added.
Volvach was charged for making fake electronic cards that caused damage to people, possession of fake electronic cards for use, and using people’s electronic cards improperly.
Gen Boonthawee urged people to beware ATM skimmers by checking ATMs to see if they had unusual devices fitted to them and to take extra precautions while entering their PIN codes to prevent people from seeing the numbers entered in order to make a transaction.