Bulgarian tagged in ATM fraud slain in QC
A Bulgarian national facing charges in different courts for automated teller machine (ATM) fraud was shot dead by unidentified men on Thursday night in Quezon City.
A day before the attack on Orlin Grozdanov Stoev, the Quezon City police arrested two Filipinos found carrying fake ATM and credit cards. Investigators are checking if they were serving as “foot soldiers” of a syndicate run by foreigners like Stoev.
Around 10 p.m. on Thursday, Stoev was found slumped on the pavement next to his black scooter at the corner of Kalayaan Avenue and Kamias Road, Barangay Pinyahan. A taxi driver then waiting at a nearby gas station recalled hearing three gunshots and seeing two men on a motorbike speeding off from the scene of the crime toward Edsa.
The 37-year-old Stoev died on the spot due to multiple gunshot wounds in the head and body, according to the Quezon City Police District (QCPD).
Stoev was arrested by the QCPD on June 14 when a bank security guard noticed him making several transactions and taking too long at an ATM kiosk in Barangay Tatalon. The guard followed the suspect when he motorbiked to two more ATMs near Trinity College.
Alerted by the guard, a QCPD team cornered the Bulgarian after a brief chase. He was then found carrying 15 cloned ATM cards, four more ATM cards without names, and P51,000 in cash. The motorcycle he used had no license plate.
Chief Insp. Elmer Monsalve, head of the homicide section of the QCPD’s Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit, said Stoev posted bail at P20,000 on June 23 after being charged with violation of the Access Device Regulation Act of 1998.
Stoev was scheduled to be arraigned on Aug. 9 before Judge Arthur Malabaguio of the Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 93.
Prior to his arrest in Quezon City, Stoev was also out on bail in connection with another ATM fraud case, this time in Guiguinto, Bulacan, where he was arrested in November last year.
Last known to be staying in a condominium in Greenhills, San Juan, the Bulgarian national was not working alone but as part of an ATM skimming syndicate, Monsalve said.
There were no immediate details regarding how long Stoev had been staying in the country, but crime scene investigators recovered from his body an alien certificate of registration issued by the Bureau of Immigration.
Stoev’s body was still unclaimed at Light Funeral Services on Kamias Road as of press time, according to Chief Supt. Guillermo Eleazar, QCPD director.
On Wednesday, the QCPD arrested two more persons for electronic fraud and estafa. The suspects were identified as Ace Balicongan, 22, and Sarah Santiago, 24, who tried to purchase a P45,000 smartphone at a department story on Aurora Boulevard allegedly using a fake credit card.
The store cashier recognized the suspects as the same customers who bought a P20,000 smartphone using a fake credit card in May.
Seized from Balicongan and Santiago were three government IDs under different names, two ATM cards and two credit cards belonging to different owners.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.