Ascension Parish Sheriff Jeff Wiley reports several arrests following an investigation into several suspects who were captured on surveillance video committing ATM cash thefts at area banks.
On November 13, deputies responded to an area bank in reference to a theft complaint.
As the investigation continued, it was learned that over the course of five days, November 9-14, an amount of money had been withdrawn from the ATM machine at several locations of an area bank. Surveillance video showed two male subjects, later identified as Anthony Lennox and Constantine Tanase using the ATM machines and withdrawing a sum of money.
Ascension Sheriff’s Detectives began an investigation and set up surveillance at the undisclosed locations where the thefts where occurring. Detectives observed the two subjects attempting to use the ATM machine but were unsuccessful. Detectives made a traffic stop on I-10 in Ascension Parish on the vehicle occupied by three subjects, later identified as Mich’e Mitchell, Lennox, and Tanase.
During the course of the investigation, it was learned that the trio would drive to ATM’s where they would use cloned ATM cards from around the country and empty out the ATM machines of large sums of money. Tanase confessed to detectives that he was a part of a large scale crime ring involving several foreign nationals that travel around the United States committing ATM thefts with cloned ATM cards.
“At this time we believe that all cloned cards used were from outside of the United States and it is unclear how they obtained the cloned cards, “added Sheriff Wiley.
“This is an example of an outstanding investigation, and two nights of surveillance at multiple sites in this parish resulting in the arrests of three traveling criminals,” he added. “These criminals are no doubt part of an organized criminal enterprise stretching from coast to coast, thanks to the United States Secret Service for ongoing assistance on this case.”
Detectives seized a quantity of cash and cloned ATM cards located at a hotel that the trio were staying. Mich’e Mitchell, 23, and Anthony Lennox, 29, both of New York, and 39-year-old Constantine Tanase, of Canada, were arrested and charged with bank fraud. Lennox bonded out on November 17 on a $90,000 bond set by Judge Verdigets. Mitchell and Tanase remain in custody at the Ascension Parish Jail.
This case is still under investigation and more arrests may be forthcoming.