SAN JOSE -- A two-year investigation by Santa Clara County's high-tech crime unit into identity theft and credit card fraud led to the arrest earlier this month of six members of an alleged credit card "skimming" operation.

The group, which was based in Southern California, allegedly installed devices in Bay Area gas station pumps that recorded consumers' credit card numbers, according to a statement released by District Attorney Jeff Rosen's office. The group used the numbers to create counterfeit credit cards with which they purchased some $500,000 in Apple computers and other goods, according to the statement.

Among those arrested were Petra Vaca, 53, of Ontario; her son, Luis Gomez, 33, of Yucaipa; and her daughter, Lupe Catelar, 35, of Fontana. They are charged with felony identity theft.

The investigation, conducted by the District Attorney's Rapid Enforcement Allied Computer Team, began in 2012. The cards were allegedly using numbers skimmed from devices placed in gas pumps in San Jose, Los Altos, Fremont, Redwood City and San Francisco.

While making the arrests earlier this month, REACT investigators discovered hundreds of counterfeit credit cards and dozens of fake drivers' licenses. They also found equipment that could be used to make credit cards, more than two dozen skimming devices and numerous weapons, including a grenade launcher.

Contact Troy Wolverton at 408-840-4285. Follow him at Twitter.com/troywolv.