Three men plead not guilty in Boise credit card scam

Three men who drove from Mexico and allegedly used counterfeit credit cards to buy merchandise at eight Boise stores have pleaded not guilty to 27 counts each of wire fraud, aggrevated identity theft and possession of 15 or more bogus cards.

Carlos J.M. Molino, 22, Rafael Perez, 30, and Irving Gonzalez Bocanegra, 24, all from Sonora, Mexico, entered the pleas last week in federal court in Boise.

The three men, who were arrested by Boise police on March 31, were found with more than $13,000 in goods and 96 fake credit cards. All but nine of the cards, which carried account numbers belonging to someone else but embossed with the names of the defendants, were found taped inside a magazine. The others were found in their possession.

Boise police also recovered 10 gift cards that were fraudulently purchased with counterfeit cards.

The men made purchases at Dick’s Sporting Goods, Nordstrom Rack, Barnes & Noble, Sports Authority, Ross, H&M and JC Penney.

They were caught after they went to a FedEx store in Boise and began packing the goods for shipment.

If convicted, the men face up to 20 years in prison on each of the wire fraud charges and up to 10 years for possession of 15 or more fake credit cards.

Aggravated identity theft carries a two-year minimum sentence that runs consecutive to other prison terms.

The three men are scheduled to go to trial June 15.