ATM Heist

Good morning everyone,

It's still nice outside at the moment, but it'll cloud over at some point today and then we're looking at rain tomorrow and possibly on Wednesday. It's going to be a bit cooler this week with highs around 24C or 25C-which is actually normal for this time of year. From Friday and through the weekend we're looking at mostly overcast weather. Will that mark the beginning of rainy season? I wonder...

These days the news in Japan is being dominated by the upcoming G7 Summit and President Obama's historic visit to Hiroshima along with the Tokyo Governor using public money for personal gain and the murder in Okinawa by a retired US marine.

The news that caught my eye is hardly being mentioned on any news show I've seen, so I've been trying-without success-to get some details. Somehow a group of people...yakuza?...was able to withdraw Y1.4 billion from ATMs using fake credit/bank cards. That's incredible!

Here's what information we do know. The ¥1.4 billion in cash was stolen from some 1,400 convenience store ATMs across the nation in the space of two hours on May 15th. Police suspect the cash was withdrawn simultaneously using counterfeit credit cards containing account information leaked from a South African bank.

Police investigators will work with South African authorities through Interpol to probe the incident, including how the credit card information was leaked, the sources said.

In each of the approximately 14,000 transactions, the maximum amount of ¥100,000 was withdrawn from Seven Bank ATMs using the fake credit cards, according to the sources. ATM transaction data suggests that information from 1,600 credit cards issued by a South African bank was used, the sources said.

I can't imagine the type of planning that would require, but with that many people involved, I'm sure they'll be able to find some leads on some of the members-who, if they aren't yakuza, are definitely from some kind of organized crime gang...I guess we'll wait and see.

Have a great day!


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