A Norwalk man who previously spent about 10 years in prison for killing a gang rival and is currently behind bars in a drug case faces additional prison time Monday for his role in a fraud ring that stole credit card information from restaurant customers.

Rudy Leo Aguilar, who goes by the street names “Fats” and “Dreamer,” pleaded guilty in September in Los Angeles federal court to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. He was sentenced a month earlier in a separate federal case to more than 15 years behind bars for distributing methamphetamine.

Aguilar, 34, was among 13 people — most of them linked to street gangs based in La Mirada and Norwalk — charged in 2017 in the bank fraud scheme.

Russell Jay “Big Dog” Ogden, 44, pleaded guilty last year to running the scheme, which used electronic devices to collect information from victims’ credit cards.

Members of the scheme encoded the stolen information on counterfeit credit cards and used the phony cards to purchase big-ticket items that were later sold for a profit. Investigators determined that many of the credit cards in the case were skimmed at a restaurant in Huntington Beach.

In total, the scheme compromised more than 500 credit cards and caused various financial institutions to suffer losses of more than $500,000 when the cards were used across Southern California at department stores such as Nordstrom and Bloomingdales, sporting goods stores and Toys R Us, according to court records.

Aguilar faces up to 32 years in federal prison, prosecutors said. That sentence is expected to run concurrent with his 188-month term in the drug case.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Aguilar was convicted in 2003 of voluntary manslaughter in a gang-related killing and was sentenced to 13 years in state prison.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.