GPD arrests 2 in credit card fraud scheme

Published 10:30 am Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Greenville Police Department has arrested a mother and son accused of stealing credit card information from customers at a local restaurant.

Tanya Powell, 42, of Greenville, and Ladairus Powell, 20, of Greenville have been arrested and charged with fraudulent use of a credit card. Tanya Powell has also been charged with two counts of fraudulent possession of a credit card.

According to authorities, Tanya Powell stole the credit card information while working as a cashier at Hardee’s.

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“She’d get the card information when customers paid for their order, and then she’d take that information home and use it to purchase items online,” said Lt. Justin Lovvorn.

Lovvorn said she also provided card numbers to Ladairus Powell so he could purchase items online.

The GPD began its investigation in May when a victim reported fraudulent credit card charges. On Monday the GPD received a second report. After investigating the charges made on the card and the businesses where the card owners had last used their cards, authorities discovered a link to Hardee’s. Authorities were also able use information provided by the last victim’s credit card company to locate a shipping address used in one of the fraudulent purchases.

“Once we had an address, I went to the house and questioned one of the suspects and she confessed to getting the credit card numbers from work and giving them to her son to make online purchases,” Lovvorn said. “The son confessed to using the credit card numbers online and said his mother used them to make purchases as well.”

Police also found two credit cards in the residence that did not belong to anyone living in the house.

According to authorities the pair amassed approximately $3,000 worth of charges on the two stolen cards.

Lovvorn urged consumers to use caution when paying with a credit card.

“We haven’t had a big problem with this type of identity theft, but it can happen,” he said. “This was one person out of many that works at Hardee’s, but it’s a good reminder to be vigilant when paying with a credit card. When you hand your card to someone, try and keep an eye on it. When you’re paying at a drive-thru window there’s no reason for the person to walk off with your card and to drop the card down below the window where you can’t see it. If that happens don’t make a scene, just take a mental note of when and where it happened and keep a close eye on your statement for the next two or three weeks. If you see any suspicious charges, contact the police. If you can give us the information about where and when you think the information was stolen that’s a big help in solving the case.”