A former Cranberry couple has been charged with stealing Wal-Mart customers' Social Security numbers at stores nationwide by sidling up to them and using cell phones to record them as they punched the numbers into keypads while cashing checks.
Robert MacVittie, 33, and Jennifer MacVittie, 31, were arrested Saturday at a Nevada casino.
A federal grand jury in Pittsburgh charged them under seal in July with conspiracy, Social Security fraud and aggravated identity theft. The indictment was unsealed today in U.S. District Court.
The U.S. attorney's office said that between October 2013 and May 2014 the couple spied on customers as they cashed checks at service counters, secretly recording their Social Security numbers.
After stealing the numbers, they traveled to Wal-Marts across the country and cashed forged checks made payable to Robert MacVittie using fake companies as payors.
After negotiating the checks, the pair bought pre-paid store cards and other merchandise at Wal-Marts.
Federal prosecutors said they presented counterfeit checks at Wal-Marts in Carnegie, Somerset and Johnstown in Western Pennsylvania as well as stores in West Virginia, Florida, Texas, Mississippi,
Alabama, Kansas and other states.