DICKSON, Tenn. (WKRN) – Two men are in custody after fraudulent IDs and passports were discovered during a traffic stop on Highway 40 in Dickson Tuesday.
Agents described what they found during the stop as eye opening and said it shows just how easy it is to get into America and set up a criminal enterprise.
Dash and body cams show the stop as the officers approach the car. Inside, according to authorities, are two foreign nationals.
One of the men reportedly said his name was Arturo Casa Ruidud. The other claimed his name was Raymundo Bahena Ortega.
Task force agents said the men had so many IDs and passports with them at the time, they are not 100 percent sure if they are who they say they are.
Ortega, who authorities later determined is actually Jorge Quinons, said he and Ruidud flew in from Guatemala to Charlotte, North Carolina.
He added they are visiting and traveling to Memphis where they plan to go to Graceland.
When the story didn’t add up, agents asked the men to get out of the car. That’s when – after the pair gave consent for the car to be searched – agents found brand new luxury items, passports, IDs, gift cards and sophisticated skimming equipment.
As the agents question the men about the multitude of gift cards, Quinons said, “These gift cards [are] to buy the things he is going to take back to his country.”
Jimmy Mann, Assistant Director of the 23rd Judicial Task Force, told News 2 receipts indicated some of the items found in the car, including purses valued at $2,800 each and MacBook Pro computers valued a nearly $2,000 each, were purchased at Opry Mills and the Mall at Green Hills.
According to Mann, the men purchased the merchandise with gift cards loaded with financial data stolen from customers at gas pumps by using a Bluetooth-like skimming device that allows for thieves to steal credit card information remotely.
“They can have this in their vehicle, like Bluetooth, where they can pull the numbers right off the skimmer,” explained Mann.
The items most concerning to agents were the number of fraudulent IDs and passports found in the men’s car.
The IDs are from places like Argentina, Venezuela, and Mexico, while some of them are only partially filled out.
“Who are they making passports for? Who are they making IDs for? They said it was theirs,” Mann said when asked what the men said they were for.
Mann showed News 2 ledgers that show what products the men have produced and the people they are shipping the merchandise to.
“That’s the biggest thing, is terrorism running up and down the interstate,” Mann said.
Authorities said Quinons has been deported twice before after entering the country illegally. He and Ruidud remain in the Dickson County jail where they are being held without bond.
News 2 is committed to tracking crime across Middle Tennessee. Visit wkrn.com/crimetracker for the latest.