In a statement, the PSP's Lisbon Metropolitan Command said that “a policeman detected strange movements of a man who repeatedly went to ATMs in the city centre of Lisbon, using brightly coloured bank cards and without apparent inscriptions from any banking entity, withdrawing large amounts of money”.
The PSP carried out an operation to investigate the case including collecting receipts that the suspect threw on the ground, "allowing the conclusion that the referred banking transaction was illegitimate and originated from a cloned card".
The suspect was later detained and the PSP carried out a house search of his residence. The second suspect was also arrested when he entered the room.
“The latter was also arrested in flagrante delicto for being in possession of counterfeit bank cards and a large amount of money, from successive withdrawals he had made during the afternoon”, said the PSP.
According to the PSP, the two men were dedicated, in national territory, to the installation of 'skimming' devices and copying of bank cards.
"Through appropriate devices, they copy the data contained in the bands of bank cards - debit and credit - recording their "pin" code and then, using counterfeit cards, carry out bank withdrawals and commercial transactions with them”, according to the PSP.
As part of the searches, the PSP seized 46 band cards, 26 blank and able to receive bank information, 17 counterfeit cards (containing legitimate bank card data), three legitimate cards, and 26,590 euros in banknotes.
The PSP also seized 23 handcrafted video capture devices with two batteries and corresponding memory cards, 16 handcrafted bank card cloning/magnetic strip reading devices, 'skimmers', 29 batteries, six memory cards, three mobile phones, one motorcycle and two laptop computers.
The PSP also added that the seized cards were copied at an ATM in the Cascais area, stressing that the suspects' activity may have “allowed profits in the order of millions of euros”.