2018-05-16 / Front Page

Two men arrested for scamming seniors

BY ALLEN ESSEX
Reporter

Two men have been arrested by Willacy County authorities on charges of credit card abuse after they allegedly targeted senior citizens in scam operations.

Anthony Soto, 42, was charged with eight counts of credit card abuse on May 9, Sheriff’s Investigator Andrew Maldonado said.

Soto was allegedly taking advantage of a 63-year-old woman who took his family into her home and supported them for the past year, Maldonado said.

Soto would allegedly take the woman’s debit card to ATM machines at an 8-liner parlor in Sebastian and take money without the victim’s consent, the officer said.

“We have seen numerous cases of identity theft fraud and credit card abuse, especially with (victims) in the age ranges of 60 years and above, both male and female,” Maldonado said.

“The Willacy County Sheriff’s Department would like to make our citizens aware that this is going on and to watch your loved ones and family members’ credit reports and credit card statements. Also watch for any other people taking advantage of anyone,” the investigator said.

“Soto was caught trying to leave town while his family was at the Holiday Inn Express in Raymondville,” Maldonado said.

In another similar case, on May 11, Angel Rios, 25, of Sebastian was arrested at his home on three charges of credit card or debit card abuse, Maldonado said.

“On May 10, a complainant filed a police report with Willacy County patrol deputies stating that his debit card had been stolen from his vehicle, Maldonado said. The senior citizen told a deputy that on May 5 and May 6, multiple charges had been made to his debit card from businesses in Sebastian.

Through an investigation and video surveillance, it was determined that Angel Rios was responsible for the charges at the locations. Rios was arrested and booked into the Willacy County jail where he is incarcerated, Maldonado said.

Lyford Police Department also assisted in the investigation by taking the victim’s statement and obtaining some video footage from Tuli’s Quick Mart in Lyford.

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