A man caught after an accomplice fitted a card skimming device to a cash machine in Huddersfield, has been jailed for 20 months.
Leeds Crown Court heard a man living in the Netherton area became suspicious about the behaviour of two occupants of a car near a Co-operative store in the town on the afternoon of August 17 and called the police.
Peter Byrne, prosecuting, told the court CCTV footage later examined showed one man getting out and attaching something to the ATM machine.
The witness was able to give officers the car number and when it was stopped soon after in a different area of the town Mircea Covaci was driving with Varga Vasile as his passenger and they were found to have a postcode list of all the ATMs in Huddersfield and Liverpool.
The court heard when the cash machine was checked a skimming device and camera had been attached to it by Vasile who had a previous conviction for a similar fraud. Following his jail sentence for that he was deported but had then returned illegally to the UK.
Covaci was the driver of the car which had been hired in Manchester and at the time he claimed to have just given a friend a lift and to have no knowledge of what he was doing.
Mr Byrne said Vasile had already been jailed for two years his part in the scam.
Nicoleta Alistari, representing Covaci, said he was only the driver and it was Vasile who had the knowledge of how to commit the offence. At the time Covaci needed money to send back to his terminally ill mother in Romania and was genuinely remorseful for his involvement.
Covaci, 39, then of Romsey Avenue, Middleton, Manchester admitted possessing articles for use in fraud.
Jailing him Recorder Simon Eckersley said it was a serious offence involving sophisticated equipment intended to get PIN codes for customers’ bank accounts when they used the cash machine.
“You had deliberately driven to this area from Manchester in order to do so and had a list of postcodes for other ATM machines.”