FBI have arrested 14 people over the theft of $1 million from Citibank using cash advance kiosks at casinos located in Southern California and Nevada.
Authorities say the suspects would open accounts at Citibank, then go to casinos in California and Nevada and withdraw the money from cash-advance kiosks as many times as they could in a 60-second span. Someone had figured out that a glitch prevented Citibank from recording the extra withdrawals.
The suspects used the money to gamble and were given comped hotel rooms because of the amount they were spending, according to the FBI. Withdrawals were kept under $10,000 to avoid federal transaction reporting requirements, the FBI release read.
FBI Special Agent in Charge Daphne Hearn commented, “While advancements in technology have created a world of accessibility to users and a convenience for consumers, they have also left room for criminals to exploit even the smallest of loopholes. For over 100 years the FBI has kept pace with technological and communication changes in the business world where these types of electronic transactions are the standard and we will continue to do so in order to help protect commercial enterprise and our nation’s economy.”
Prosecutors said the suspects allegedly withdrew about $1 million during an eight-month period. FBI agents said the loophole in the Citibank system has now been closed.