YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: Two men with a group who illegally bought more than $7,000 worth of gift cards from a Rutherford Rite-Aid earlier this week were carrying 15 phony credit cards when borough police grabbed them yesterday, authorities said.
A manager at the Park Avenue store told responding officers yesterday that the two were back in the store after they and five others purchased thousands in Vanilla gift cards using bogus credit cards on Tuesday, Capt. Patrick Feliciano said this afternoon.
One of the two, 27-year-old Isaac Johnson of Jersey City ( above, top ), bought $100 worth of pre-paid gift cards that he was going to pay for with a credit card, but he put it back in his pocket and paid with cash instead after officers entered the store, Feliciano said.
The other, Renaldo Coleman, 29, of Brooklyn ( above, bottom ), was at the register with gift cards that he left there when the officers arrived, he said.
Both then quickly left the store.
Officer William Gumbman grabbed Coleman at the intersection of Highland Cross and Park Avenue.
Coleman “stated that he and Johnson drove to Rutherford in a 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee [that] was parked on Park Avenue to visit a friend named Jim Bean,” Feliciano said, “but he was unable to provide an address or any other pedigree information for him.”
Officer Scott Ahearn found Johnson in front of a nearby Park Avenue store.
Johnson, it turned out, was carrying nine counterfeit credit cards and Coleman six of them, the captain said.
Investigators with a search warrant found several git cards and “other items of evidentiary value” in the Jeep.
Johnson and Coleman were being held on $50,000 bail each in the Bergen County Jail, charged with theft, credit card theft, forgery and receiving stolen property, among other counts.
An investigation was continuing.
MUGSHOTS: Courtesy RUTHERFORD PD
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