News and Press Releases

RICO Indicment In eBay Fraud Case

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 12, 2012

MOBILE, AL-- United States Attorney Kenyen R. Brown announced today that Jason Christopher Spellen, one the ten defendants, 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), was arraigned today in federal district court. The Indictment also contains a Forfeiture Notice seeking a $7,000,000.00 money judgment. Trial is currently set for February 2013.

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 in this case is startling. While technological advances may present new avenues for thieves to 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 Inspection 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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