Above: Artak Martikian. September 2010 update: Charges against Arman Martikian have been dropped by Bakersfield Police Department. Detective Steve Miller told reporters for The Mountain Enterprise that Artak used a car registered to Arman Martikian, causing his brother to be implicated in the investigation.
Photographs of those who have allegedly been seen placing credit card "skimming" devices in self service gas station card readers were released by Bakersfield Police Department today. Many Mountain Community residents reported identity theft incidents after purchasing gasoline in Lebec at the Flying J this year. This is the press release, as we received it from Bakersfield PD.
FRAZIER PARK (Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2009, 3:10 p.m.)—Bakersfield Police Investigators reported theye have identified two of the suspects responsible for using stolen credit card information through the recently reported skimming device operation at local gas stations. The suspects are identified as:
Arman Martikian who is described as male of Armenian decent, 5’6”, 150 pounds, dark shaved hair, clean shaven and
Artak Martikian who is described as a male of Armenian decent, 5’5”, 150 pounds, dark shaved hair, mustache and goatee.
UPDATE: In Sepember 2010, Bakersfield Police Department Detective Scott Miller said that charges against Arman Martikian have been dropped. "Artak was using Arman’s car," MIller said.
They are possibly driving a silver 2002 Ford Taurus California license number 4WVC975.
Both are wanted for an arrest warrant charging 5 counts of burglary at a local store using stolen credit card information through a skimming device at a service station in Simi Valley, Ca.
The Martikians are believed to be part of a ring which travels up and down the state installing skimming devices inside gas pump housings. Unsuspecting customers swipe their credit and debit cards at the pump to pay for gas and the information on the card is captured by the skimming device. The information is then retrieved manually by the suspects or in some cases wirelessly downloaded from a nearby location. Suspects then apply the credit card account number to a blank card and make purchases on the card in other cities.
The attached surveillance photo is of Artak Martikian making a purchase with stolen credit card information at a Target in Bakersfield.
Bakersfield Police are working with other agencies to identify and arrest other ring members. The Martikians are believed to be nomadic but have a last known address in Los Angeles Ca.
Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of either suspect is encouraged to call Detective Scott Miller at 326-3552.
Below (top), The surveillance photo is of Artak Martikian making a purchase with stolen credit card information at a Target in Bakersfield. (bottom) The skimming device.
This is part of the December 25, 2009 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.
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