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Student from China sentenced in San Gabriel Valley credit card scheme

January 25, 2011 |  3:02 pm

A student from Shanghai has been sentenced to just over two years in federal prison for his role in a scheme that used fraudulent credit cards to make purchases at stores in the San Gabriel Valley.

Tong Zhang, 24, was sentenced Monday to 27 months by U.S. District Judge A. Howard Matz. He is the third Chinese national to be sentenced in connection with the scheme.

Zhang dropped out of school at Santa Monica College, where he was studying on a student visa, and moved to Las Vegas, where he began buying credit card numbers over the Internet, according to prosecutors.

Zhang then sold some of the credit card numbers to 42-year-old Fei Wang, who with his girlfriend Donghong Shen, 41, recruited workers through advertisements in Chinese-language newspapers to use counterfeit credit cards to make fraudulent purchases at stores, such as Wal-Mart in Glendora.

In January, federal agents arrested Wang and Shen at their Monterey Park home. Zhang was arrested two months later at his home in Las Vegas, where agents found more than 600 credit card numbers on his computers.

Last year, Judge Matz sentenced Wang to 30 months in federal prison and Shen to 15 months in federal prison.

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-- Tony Barboza

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