Many think that theft is a victim-less crime, Amazon is sending a message that this isn’t true. Three people were sentenced for stealing more than $1.2 million in electronics from Amazon.
The con started with a married couple from Indiana, Erin and Leah Jeanette Finan, creating hundreds of fake online identities and accounts. They used these accounts to order over 2,700 electronic items that would be resold by their associate, Danijel Glumac.
The Finans would acquire the electronic merchandise for Glumac to sell the items to an entity in New York, that would sell the goods to the public. The couple would use the fake identities to order products, then demand replacements for broken products and abandoning the fake account before they could be traced for fraud.
The couple acquired so many products because they would often demand multiple replacements per order, tricking retailers to send them more goods. To further cover their tracks they would use pre-paid gift cards.
The couple abused Amazon’s “receive a replacement before they return a broken item” policy by requesting replacements for all fraudulent orders made. The couple stole approximately $750,000 through fraudulent orders and Glumac profited $500,000 from the con.
In one order the couple ordered two Samsung smartwatches and claimed that the initial watches needed to be replaced, triggering Amazon to send two replacement smartwatches. With the Amazon policy this enabled the couple to sell three smartwatches while only paying Amazon for one smartwatch.
The couple was charged with a six year prison sentence for mail fraud and money laundering, pleading guilty of these charges in October 2017. Glumac plead guilty to money laundering and acting as the middle man for selling the items, he was sentenced to two years in prison.
The e-commerce website usually bans users who place too many fraudulent orders or customers who make frequent returns, which is why the couple needed all the fake accounts. Amazon is using this case to show why they have such a strict banning system and will be cracking down on any fraudulent activity.
Check out the video above for more on this e-commerce caper.