Martinez police arrested two men on suspicion of identity theft early Friday morning after discovering a “skimming” device on a gas pump at a 7-Eleven store in the city.David Karapetyan, 31, and Zhiraya Zamanyan, 30, were arrested after police were notified Thursday about the device on a gas pump at the station located at 530 Morello Ave.Skimming devices capture the account and PIN numbers of customers who use the pumps, and are connected to the interior computer system so they are not visible to the customers, police said.Investigators removed the device, replaced it with a decoy, and conducted surveillance of the gas pump until the suspects returned to retrieve it.At about 1:30 a.m. Friday, Karapetyan and Zamanyan were seen opening the gas pump and removing the decoy skimmer. The suspects’ vehicle was stopped and the men were arrested, according to police.A search of the vehicle revealed several additional devices and fraudulent credit cards. Authorities also found two GPS devices in the vehicle that showed the addresses of numerous gas stations elsewhere in California and are looking into whether there are additional skimmers at those locations, police said. At least six skimmers have been found so far in areas near Hayward, Oakland and Sacramento, according to police.The suspects, who live in the Los Angeles area, were booked into Contra Costa County jail in Martinez. Karapetyan was booked on suspicion of conspiracy and 14 counts of identity theft, and has an immigration hold. Zamanyan was booked on suspicion of conspiracy and 16 counts of identity theft, police said.
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