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Report: OnStar helps bust identity theft ring in Florida

ORLANDO, Fla. - An employee at a Florida company that offers promotional vacations has been charged with stealing reservation documents and then selling the credit card information of more than 1,855 customers to two other people, Orlando police detectives said Monday.

Two others have also been arrested -- and OnStar, an in-vehicle security system, helped authorities track them down, reports CBS affiliate WKMG.

Preferred Guest Resorts employee Chrystie Hall was charged with trafficking in counterfeit credit cards and conspiracy to commit grand theft.

Xavier Stephens and Bridgett Bennifield, who detectives said purchased documents with credit card numbers from Hall, were charged with trafficking in counterfeit credit cards and fraud.

Police ultimately tracked down Bennifield and Stephens after they rented a car using the stolen credit card information of an 85-year-old man, according to the station. The man contacted police when he noticed the charge on his credit card. Police were then able to track to the rental car to a FedEx location in Orlando using the OnStar technology in the vehicle. Authorities used that technology to shut down the car, rendering it inoperable, reports the station.

When police caught up to Bennifield and Stephens, they reportedly found two large bags filled with stolen credit card information.

Stephens and Bennifield reportedly told detectives they purchased bags of documents for $100 a bag and resold each page of credit card documents for $50 a page. Each bag contained between 400 to 500 documents that were supposed to have been shredded. The resale value of the documents found on Stephens and Bennifield at the time of their arrest was more than $92,000, and the two had been purchasing documents since last December, detectives said.

"This is a huge mess. A lot of our victims are elderly and from out of state," said Sgt. Rhonda Huckleberry in a statement.

Hall told detectives she had worked for the company for 12 years.

Preferred Guest Resorts attorney Michael Swann said company officials were cooperating with investigators.

"We are shocked and dismayed and certainly want to get to the bottom of this," Swann said. "We will look into this with all seriousness and take appropriate action."

Preferred Guests Resorts is required to notify their customers about what happened, according to the Orlando police detectives, who said there could be more victims.

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