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PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- A third man has pleaded guilty in federal court here to charges of conspiracy and aggravated identity theft in connection with a keypad-tampering scheme carried out at several Stop & Shop stores in Rhode Island and Massachusetts, two days after two other defendants admitted guilt in the same case.
Like Arman Ter-Esayan and Gevork Baltadjian, Arutyun Shatarevyan now awaits sentencing on the federal charges, according to published reports. A fourth man, Mikael Stepanian, has not yet been formally charged, although the government has until June 27 to do so. All face separate state charges relating to the Stop & Shop fraud.
The four men, all from California, were arrested in February and accused of plotting to steal credit and debit card numbers from the supermarket's customers. According to the Secret Service, hundreds of account numbers were compromised by the scheme, and three banks say they've lost upwards of $100,000.