Credit card fraud suspects go on $100K spree

Craig Cassidy, The Union Democrat /

Sonora and Modesto police are searching for a woman connected to a large credit-card fraud scheme that may have netted the crooks $100,000-plus in ill-gotten goods and services, many rung up in Tuolumne County.

Wanted is Shatece Turner, 29, of Modesto, whose last known address was on Espana Drive.

Jeremy Keturi, 35, who lives at the same address, was arrested by Modesto police Wednesday. He was booked at 10 a.m. into the Stanislaus County Jail on several charges, including grand theft, burglary, identity theft and conspiracy. He bailed out at 6 p.m. Thursday, according to jail officials.

The investigation into Keturi and Turner began Feb. 10, when a Ventura County identity theft victim contacted Sonora police. She said her credit card was used to buy thousands of dollars worth of merchandise at several Tuolumne County businesses. She, however, still had possession of her actual card.

A Sonora police investigator contacted businesses in Sonora, where a card resembling the victim's had been used. The officer was able to get video surveillance recordings, lists of property purchased, and other documentation.

A photo lineup pointed to Keturi and Turner as suspects, Sonora Police Chief Mark Stinson said.

Further linking the suspects to the crime were pictures on Keturi's Facebook page of Turner wearing some of the allegedly ill-gotten property and also pictures of a ski trip believed to have been paid for with a fraudulent card.

Sonora and Modesto police Wednesday searched Keturi and Turner's home and found about $10,000 worth of property believed have to been purchased with bogus cards, plus credit card receipts totaling more than $100,000, according to Stinson.

Investigators also found several credit cards in other people's names, 500 credit card blanks with magnetic strips, an embosser, a card skimmer used to steal credit card information where cards are swiped, and lists of people's names, dates of birth and Social Security numbers, Stinson said.

"Most of the stolen property from Sonora was located inside the residence, as well as other stolen property," Stinson said, estimating $10,000-plus in stolen property was recovered, some in its original packaging.

Keturi lists his occupation as "student" on the career networking website LinkedIn. He said he is working on a bachelor's degree at the University of Phoenix. He could not be reached for comment this morning.

Turner maintains an "Instagram" social networking account showing a life complete with travels to the coast, the snow and Rainbow Pools near Groveland.

11889284
The Union Democrat
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