“… the crooks equipped waiters at Smith & Wollensky, The Capital Grille, Wolfgang’s Steakhouse and JoJo — and at two restaurants outside the city — with electronic skimmers to steal the info from at least 50 customers…”
Waiters at some of New York’s swankiest eateries were part of a criminal crew that stole credit card information to create counterfeit cards — and then racked up some $600,000 in purchases, prosecutors revealed Friday.
Then Jacas used a “network of shoppers” to go on shopping sprees at high-end Manhattan stores like Chanel, Neiman Marcus, Cartier, Hermes of Paris, Bloomingdales, Bergdorf Goodman, Waldmann’s, London Jewelers, Burberry, Jimmy Choo, Lord & Taylor, prosecutors said.
One of them was Gregory Portacio, who infamously dragged a Queens mom to her death in 1980 by grabbing her neck chain and hanging on while an accomplice drove their getaway car down a block.
“Anybody who thinks credit card fraud brings out high class criminals should think again,” said Police Commissioner Ray Kelly, whose men were still searching for the 51-year-old career criminal and sex offender.
The crooks even used the phony American Express cards to refuel at Starbucks and also hit stores in Westchester County, Long Island, Boston, Chicago and Florida.
The ill-gotten goods were then fenced to “complicit customers” for cash, prosecutors said.