Prosecutors target credit card thieves overseas

WASHINGTON – Criminals from around the world buy and sell stolen credit card information with ease in today’s digital age. But if they commit their crime entirely outside the United States, they may be beyond the reach of federal prosecutors.

Justice Department officials are seeking a tougher law to combat overseas credit card trafficking, an increasingly lucrative crime that crosses national boundaries.

Authorities said the current statute is too weak because it allows people in other countries to avoid prosecution if they stay outside the United States when buying and selling the data and don’t pass their illicit business through the United States. The Justice Department is asking Congress to amend the law to make it illegal for an international criminal to possess, buy or sell a stolen credit card issued by a U.S. bank no matter where in the world the transaction occurs.

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