ATM skimmer sentenced to four years in prison

SEATTLE — A Sammamish man arrested last year while attempting to retrieve a skimming device from an Everett cash machine was sentenced Friday to four years in federal prison.

Dmitry A. Sandler, 26, also was ordered to pay back the more than $176,000 that he raided from people’s bank accounts.

Sandler was connected to a skimming ring operating in Snohomish County, Seattle and Denver between April and November 2011.

Skimming equipment was installed on cash machines, capturing bank account numbers while pinhole cameras recorded the victim’s personal identification number, prosecutors said. Sandler was accused of encoding the information on blank cards and stealing money from about 255 people.

The skimming devices were installed primarily on Chase Bank machines in Lynnwood, Snohomish, Everett, Seattle and Denver.

A bank investigator reviewing surveillance photographs of an Everett machine noted that Sandler had put illegal equipment on an ATM in November 2011. He alerted Everett police and the Secret Services Electronic Crimes Task Force. The ATM was put under surveillance, and Sandler was arrested when he returned for the equipment.

He pleaded guilty in February to bank fraud and identity theft.

Sandler is a Russian immigrant. He is expected to be deported once he is released from prison.

At sentencing U.S. District Court Ricardo S. Martinez noted that Sandler “requested asylum, saying he likes Americans, then he engaged in stealing money from these very people.”

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