RICO Indictment In eBay Fraud Case
MOBILE, AL-- United States Attorney Kenyen R. Brown announced today that ten defendants were indicted by the October Federal Grand Jury and charged with operating a Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) conspiracy, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1962(d). The Indictment contains a Forfeiture Notice seeking a $7,000,000.00 money judgment.
Defendant Jason Christopher Spellen, a Conyers, Georgia resident, defendant Miguel Lawayne Taylor, an Arizona resident, defendant Steven P. Marks, an Atlanta, Georgia resident, defendant Tariq Rashid Sims, aka Tai, an Atlanta, Georgia resident, defendant Corey Timmons, an Atlanta, Georgia resident, defendant Raymond Spellen, a Conyers, Georgia resident, defendant Kevin Maurice Demps, a Detroit, Michigan resident, defendant Maurice Allen Haggen, a Detroit, Michigan resident, defendant Raphael Ward aka Jayson Taylor, a Detroit, Michigan resident, and defendant Andrew Valentino Wilson, III, an Atlanta, Georgia resident, all face a maximum possible penalty of 20 years imprisonment if convicted. Spellen is charged with six additional counts to include money laundering, Taylor is also charged with money laundering and mail fraud, Marks, Sims, and Timmons are also charged with conspiracy to sell stolen merchandise.
The RICO count alleges the Spellen Enterprise fraudulently purchased electronics, such as PlayStation3s, I-Pods, and I-Pads, from retail stores using counterfeited credit cards and drivers’ licenses provided them by other members of the conspiracy, and by the use of lines-of-credit from retail stores. It also alleges the Enterprise sold both fraudulently-procured electronics and stolen electronics on eBay and by other means. A total of ten individuals have previously entered guilty pleas in connection with the same eBay fraud investigation. Those individuals are all awaiting sentencing.
Kenyen Brown, United States Attorney, said: “The sophistication and magnitude of the fraud scheme engaged in this case is startling. While technological advances may present new avenues for thieves to procure and sell their stolen goods, law enforcement will continue to use every tool at its disposal to bring law breakers to justice.”
The case arises from an investigation by the United States Secret Service, who were assisted by the United States Postal Service and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI). The eBayProAct team also assisted the Secret Service. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Deborah Griffin.
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