Colombia’s attorney general’s office announced that it has dismantled a massive fraud operation committed by an organized crime group that called itself “Los Call Center.” The group committed crimes from different parts of the Eje Cafetero (the region of Colombia anchored by the cities Pereira, Armenia & Manizales) and managed to affect 20 banks and deceive more than 3,500 victims. In the operations, 116 hard drives were seized, a large number of folios with credit card information and notebooks with thousands of records.
The Office of the Attorney General charged 24 people before the Second Municipal Court of Quimbaya, Quindío for their alleged responsibility in the crimes of conspiracy to commit a crime, aggravated fraud in mass modality, aggravated violation of personal data and non-consensual transfer of assets.
The investigation carried out by a prosecutor of the Support Structure of the Quindío Section, with the support of SIJÍN (Colombia’s regional domestic intelligence organ) and INCOCRÉDITO (Colombia’s financial industry anti-fraud association), and demonstrated that the defendants are part of the Organized Common Crime Group (GDCO) “Los Call Center.”
In accordance with the provisions, those now prosecuted allegedly managed seven front call centers located in Quimbaya, Quindío, Manizales, Caldas and Dosquebradas, Risaralda where they exercised roles as owners, liaisons with banks, administrators, supervisors and advisers in order to deceive their victims.
Prosecutors say that they bought financial databases with confidential information to access victims whom they called posing as bank advisers offering different products or inducing them to acquire portfolios of services that they had never requested, under pretexts such as it was mandatory to purchase insurance or that they were recipients of a gift, as well as handling fee waivers.
Due to these facts, the judge ordered custodial and non-custodial security measures for the 24 suspects investigated, as follows:
Jail Awaiting Trial
- Doman Betancur Montes
- Estefanía Corrales Grisales
- Juan Manuel Correa Grisales
- María Eugenia Ríos Tabares (alleged leader)
- Duván Obando Valencia (alleged leader)
- Erika Gómez Martínez
- Yesenia Soto Loaiza
Released Pending Trial
- Yeison David López Villa
- Zaira Patricia Pomares Díaz
- Jenny Carolina Villada Largo
- Manuela Cárdenas Gil
- Yenny Natalia Ramirez Montes
- Sara Inés Ramírez Castro
- Diana Patricia Arévalo Castellanos
- Astrid Carolina Agudelo Jiménez
- Sandra Viviana Cardona
- María Camila Velásquez Agudelo
- Natalia Arenas López
- María Antonia Ospina Cardona
- Yolima Zapata Carvajal
- Erika García Cárdenas
- Paola Jiseth Duque Ramírez
- Carmen Emilia Álvarez Barahona (accused at liberty)
- Felipe Ramírez Mejía (accused at liberty)
Through the investigation in which sufficient material probative elements and physical evidence were collected, it was determined that 16 national banks and 4 international banks were affected, with a confirmed fraud of $5,062,904,251 COP. Likewise, financial data of 18,470 people were found in Colombia and other countries, and 6,929 records referring to claims of fraud, non-consensual purchases or without specification of the type of claim, of which more than 3,500 victims were identified.
Legally obtained interceptions account for the way in which the databases would have been purchased, in addition to the exchange and commercialization of data reserved for making non-consensual purchases in different commercial establishments.
The suspects were captured in the middle of six raids carried out by members of the SIJÍN on September 15 last in Manizales and Villamaría (Caldas), and Pereira and Dosquebradas (Risaralda), achieving the seizure of 116 hard drives, 2,300 pages with databases, 5 cell phones, 4 computers, a car for domain extinction purposes and two properties for confiscation purposes.
Image courtesy Policia Nacional