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An investigation into a series of credit card fraud reports in Clinton has led to the arrest of a Romanian national who is in the United States illegally, Clinton Police Chief Kevin Gyrion said. 

The man was allegedly using skimming devices to obtain credit card information that he would then use at local stores and ATMs. 

Sorin Tabac, 26, whose arrest documents indicate he has a Chicago address, is charged in Clinton County District Court with one count of unauthorized use of a credit card over $1,500 but under $10,000, a Class D felony that carries a prison sentence of five years.

Sorin Tabac

Sorin Tabac

Tabac also is charged with one count of unauthorized use of a credit card under $1,500, an aggravated misdemeanor that carries a prison sentence of two years.

According to the arrest affidavits filed by Clinton Police Officer Brett Johnson, on Jan. 30, the Clinton Police Department was notified of skimmed credit cards that were being used in Clinton.

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Using surveillance footage, police were able to determine that the credit card information was obtained from several businesses by a man wearing a gray beanie, blue coat with black pants and shoes who was going to the ATMs and conducting transactions.

The man had been to the ATMs at Lyon’s Filling Station, Kwik Star Main Avenue, Jewel Osco, Shell Express, Shell Central, Hy-Vee gas station, Hy-Vee, Walgreens South, Shell South, Porter’s and Walmart.

Bank records indicate the transactions occurred between 11:58 a.m. and 3:23 p.m. on Jan. 30.

The man was observed driving a gray 2011 Audi with an Illinois license plate.

On Monday, Feb. 12, a license plate reader observed the Audi with the Illinois license plate in the area of 8th Avenue South in Clinton.

The vehicle was located parked at an apartment building at 443 8th Ave. S.

The sole occupant of the vehicle was identified as Tabac, the man seen in the surveillance videos. It was then learned he had just allegedly used skimmed credit card information at Walgreens South, Hy-Vee and Hy-Vee gas, acquiring at least $100.

Clinton Police served a search warrant and located Tabac with two devices used for skimming credit card information, along with several gift cards and more than $1,000 in U.S. currency.

During a post-Miranda interview, Tabac admitted to being in the U.S. illegally and to committing the illegal activity in order to obtain money to live on.

Tabac was arrested and booked into the Clinton County Jail.

During a first appearance on the charges Tuesday in Clinton County District Court, District Associate Judge Kimberly Shepherd scheduled a preliminary hearing for Feb. 23.

Tabac was being held Thursday morning in the Clinton County Jail on a cash-only bond of $100,000.

Gyrion said the Clinton Police Department and the Blackhawk Area Task Force were continuing the investigation.

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