Identity theft ring busted at Corning hotel

A man and woman believed to be creating fraudulent check and credit cards, and reportedly in possession of financial information of other people, were arrested recently in the Super 8 Motel in Corning.

Salvador Cruz Torres, 32 of Sacramento, and Tabitha Marie Fischer, 19, of Orangevale, were booked into Tehama County Jail and charged on Tuesday in Superior Court with multiple identifying information theft, unlawful access card activity and forgery.

Bail was set at $250,000 each during a court hearing.

Police were alerted to the couple after a man later identified as Torres was seen outside a Solano Street convenience story about 10:40 a.m. Sept. 21. He had a mask in his hand, the Tehama County District Attorney’s Office reported.

The man walked to a black Jeep Cherokee with Nevada license plates, placed the mask inside and drove away.

“He made people a little nervous,” said Milt Bruner, chief investigator for the District Attorney’s Office. “That is why Corning police were initially called. But we do not believe he intended to rob anyone.”

At 12:30 p.m., law enforcement contacted Torres and Fischer at the motel.

A search of the room reportedly uncovered fraudulently manufactured credit and debit cards, fraudulently manufactured government identification cards, personal information on individuals and financial account information, the District Attorney’s Office reported.

A computer equipped with a credit card reader and writer, a printer designed to specifically print credit cards, an embossing machine used to imprint credit cards and other associated computer equipment were also seized.

Bruner said other evidence suggests the couple had been traveling throughout the North State and western Nevada and using the fraudulent cards and equipment.

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