3 arrested for organized credit card fraud in Ocala, police say

Thousands spent on gift cards, police say

(left to right) Bikita Forestal, 32, Jessica Spano, 37, and Kiana Stanton, 34. (Ocala Police Department)

OCALA, Fla. – Three women arrested by Ocala police Thursday were accused of using stolen credit cards to spend more than $9,000 on gift cards and money orders, according to a news release.

Bikita Forestal, 32, Jessica Spano, 37, and Kiana Stanton, 34, were each charged with one count of organized fraud, with both Forestal and Stanton also charged with burglary of a conveyance and petit theft due to how the credit cards were obtained, police said.

[TRENDING: Student ends up as only passenger on transatlantic flight | Biden to give away 400 million N95 masks | Become a News 6 Insider (it’s free!)]

On Jan. 3, Ocala police responded to a victim who reported an unknown person had broken into their vehicle and stolen a backpack and wallet containing several credit cards. The officer assigned to the case said the victim began receiving alerts within the day stating their cards were being used at Publix, Target, Winn-Dixie, CVS, Roses, Circle K and two Walgreens stores, totaling $8,661.38 in fraudulent purchases, according to the release.

The officer stated they visited each store to collect receipts from the purchases and review surveillance video. On camera, Forestal, Spano and Stanton could allegedly be seen acting alone and in pairs, buying gift cards and attempting to transfer money to themselves. On Jan. 5, Spano successfully completed a money order through the U.S. Postal Service for a transaction amount of $1001.95, police said.

A separate incident was reported Jan. 13 in which another vehicle was broken into for the credit cards inside, Ocala police said. A detective said their investigation led them to a Target where the cards were being used, and where video surveillance allegedly showed Stanton making the purchases before leaving the store and entering a car.

Officers said they conducted a traffic stop on the car and arrested Forestal, who was driving, and Stanton in the backseat. Contact was later made with Spano, who was also arrested, and all three women were taken to the Marion County jail without incident, police said.

Spano is being held on $2,000 bond, while Forestal and Stanton are each held on $5,000 bond.


About the Author:

Brandon, a UCF grad, joined the ClickOrlando team in November 2021. Before joining News 6, Brandon worked at WDBO.