ATM-skimmer gets 30 months


GREAT BAY – The Common Court of Justice acquitted one Bulgarian skimmer of all charges and sentenced a second one yesterday only for the possession of a skimming-device he had placed on an ATM of the Windward Islands Bank at the Sint Rose Arcade in  Philipsburg in September of last year. The court sentenced Apostol Vasilev Yanev to 30 months of imprisonment, but it acquitted co-defendant Nikolay Dimitrov D.

The 48-year old Nikolay D. was seen on video footage behind his 35-year old co-defendant who placed the skimming device on the ATM. “The dossier shows that he was not the one who placed the skimming device,” the court rules, adding that there is also no evidence of a close cooperation with his co-defendant. “It could be considered proven that he stood behind the one that placed the skimming device, but this is insufficient for assuming complicity.”

For Apostol Yanev, the skimming-trial had a less happy ending. The court acquitted him of an attempt to steal money with forged credit cards, even though he had been caught with a skimming device on the ATM. “The evidence shows that there was an attempt to copy the magnetic strips of bank cards,” the ruling states. “This way, the one who had the actual control over these bank cards does not lose that control. Because of this, copying the date from magnetic strips cannot be qualified as taking away a good. While the objective of copying bank cards is possibly stealing money, copying these data and the objective of stealing money are too far apart to speak of an attempt to steal money.”

The court considered proven though that Yanev had placed the skimming device on the ATM at the Sint Rose Arcade.