Co-founder of ID theft Web site sentenced

The co-founder of a Web site that investigators claimed was one of the largest online centers for trafficking in stolen identity information and credit cards was sentenced Thursday to two years and eight months in prison.

The sentence for Andrew Mantovani was the longest of the five imposed to date involving the site which had about 4,000 members who dealt with at least 1.5 million stolen credit card numbers and caused more than $4 million in losses, federal prosecutors said.

Mantovani, 24, of Scottsdale, Ariz., was also fined $5,000 by U.S. District Judge William J. Martini.

Mantovani was among 21 people arrested around the nation in October 2004 after federal agents gained control of the site during a yearlong undercover investigation by the Secret Service and other agencies. He and 17 others have pleaded guilty. Several people were also arrested overseas.

Mantovani pleaded guilty to several charges on Nov. 17, admitting his leading role as administrator of the Web site.


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