Lewisville Man Gets 5 Years for Stealing Credit Card Numbers in Scheme to Rent Hotel Rooms to Pimps, Drug Dealers

A Lewisville man will spend nearly five years in federal prison after he admitted to stealing more than a thousand credit and debit card numbers online, using the cards to book hotel rooms and renting those rooms out to drug dealers and pimps.A federal judge sentenced Odis Edwards, 40, to 58 months behind bars on Monday. Edwards pleaded guilty in January to one count of conspiracy to commit access device fraud. Edwards stole information for more than 1,200 credit and debit cards in chat room and on the darknet, officials said. He and his associates then used counterfeit or altered cards to spend money from those accounts.The group ran a scheme to book hotel rooms using the cards, then rented them to drug dealers and pimps at a fraction of their actual cost, officials said. In total, they booked more than $250,000 worth of hotel rooms around Dallas.Authorities got wind of the scheme after hotel employees became suspicious of the pricey room-service bills charged to Edwards' account by multiple people. Officers searched the rooms and found altered credit cards, notebooks containing apparent credit card numbers and URLs for digital credit card number generators. "More and more, we're seeing perpetrators attempt to cloak themselves in the seeming anonymity of the darknet," Erin Nealy Cox, U.S. attorney for the northern district of Texas, said in a written statement. "But they should know that we prioritize the investigation of illicit activity on the darknet and will vigorously prosecute this unlawful behavior."  Continue reading...

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