Police name two Bulgarian nationals suspects in ATM skimming case targeting foreign tourists

Indonesian ATMs. Photo: Flickr / Wayan Vota
Indonesian ATMs. Photo: Flickr / Wayan Vota

Two Bulgarian nationals have been named suspects in connection with ATM skimming after local residents in Nusa Penida allegedly caught them in the act and brought them to the police.

“The two foreigners have been named suspects in an ATM skimming attempt. We are still doing further investigation on both of them,” Mirza Gunawan from Klungkung Police told Tribunnews.

He added that the Bulgarians, identified by their initials KZI, 24, and GZI, 25, have been in Indonesia since May 2. Police say they confessed to attempting to steal ATM data, with foreign tourists as their targets.

“They already had plans for skimming. They went to Nusa Penida to survey which ATMs they could use as targets,” Mirza was quoted as saying.

Bali has a pretty bad rap for ATM skimming, and this certainly isn’t the first time that Bulgarian nationals have been involved with such cases. Late last year, four Bulgarian men were arrested after police caught them tinkering with cash machines in Sanur.

That was followed by yet another arrest in February of five Bulgarian men in Uluwatu, who were also connected with an ATM skimming scam.

“We hope that this case will push local residents to be more alert and report immediately if they see any suspicious activities,” Reka Sanjaya from Nusa Penida police, as quoted by Balipost.

KZI and GZI was first brought to the Nusa Penida Police Station, but their case is now being handled by the Klungkung Police.

The pair told the police that they’d learned skimming from the internet, and were both farmers back home, according to a report from Tribunnews. Authorities say neither KZI or GZI were successfully able to copy any sensitive information, but police reportedly secured all of their belongings, including their laptops and suitcases.

Under Indonesia’s Information and Electronic Transactions Law, they could face up to 7 years in prison.


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