Several suspects have been arrested and $60,000 in goods allegedly purchased with stolen credit card numbers have been seized in a fraud investigation that began in Santa Monica and wound its way to Central California, authorities announced Thursday.
Santa Monica police said they opened the investigation when a woman living on 10th Street reported her credit card information had been stolen and she was receiving packages at her home she did not purchase.
"The suspect was seen trying to intercept these packages and fled," public information officer Sgt. Richard Lewis said in a statement. "Investigators were able to identify the main suspect and began working closely with the Atascadero Police Department where [the suspect] resided and much of the operation was occurring from there."
On Friday, investigators served a served a search warrant in Bradley, a tiny city in Monterey County, and arrested Vincent Gerard Tarantino, 20, according to Atascadero police.
Found in the seizure were 27,000 rounds of ammunition, including 220 rounds of .50 caliber ammunition "most often used by the military and less frequently by law enforcement during highly critical incidents involving SWAT sniper teams," according to Atascadero police.
They also seized electronics, expensive clothes and accessories, and a John Deer riding mower. In Tarantino's car, investigators said they found a loaded and unregistered .45 caliber handgun and 19 grams of marijuana.
The investigation occurred over several weeks and also led to two other arrests in Los Angeles by Santa Monica police, the Adascadero Police Department said.
"The case is still very active," said Lewis.