Detectives find 31 skimmers at gas stations throughout Hillsborough County


Investigators have arrested a suspect after discovering 31 credit card skimmers placed at gas pumps across Hillsborough County.

The Florida Department of Agriculture joined forces with the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office and Tampa police to inspect thousands of gas pumps for any signs of tampering.


In all, detectives examined 13,612 gas pumps at 440 gas stations throughout the county -- ultimately finding 31 skimmers.

Fingerprints on the skimmers led investigators to one suspect, identified as 41-year-old Lester Echemendia Tapia. He's been charged with possession of a skimming device, trafficking in counterfeit credit cards and fraudulent possession of personal identification information.

Lester Tapia (HCSO)

Sheriff Chad Chronister says they do not believe anyone's personal information was compromised, but urge anyone who believes their information was stolen to contact the sheriff's office at 813-247-8200.

You can also file a report on the sheriff's office website.