News and Press Releases

BENTONVILLE HUSBAND AND WIFE SENTENCED FOR WIRE FRAUD INVOLVING WALMART STORES



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 23, 2012

 






Fayetteville- Conner Eldridge, United States Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas,
announced today that Robert Edward Patterson, 45 and his wife, Shari Lou Loveless, 51 both of
Bentonville, were sentenced in Federal Court in Fayetteville to 21 months imprisonment followed
by 3 years of supervised release for wire fraud involving several Walmart Stores. The sentence was
imposed by the Honorable Robert T. Dawson, United States District Judge.
The defendants were charged in a 15-count indictment returned by the grand jury on
September 14, 2011, with knowingly and willfully defrauding Walmart by manufacturing fake
Universal Price Code (“UPC”) stickers and placing those stickers on merchandise they purchased
from Walmart at a price far below the product’s true price. The defendants then removed the fake
UPC stickers and returned the merchandise to Walmart for a cash refund for the products’ full value.
Each time the defendants requested a refund, the individual store’s computer communications
traveled in interstate commerce to Walmart’s computer centers in Missouri and Northwest Arkansas
in order to process the cash refund.
The defendants conducted their fraud scheme at Walmart stores throughout Arkansas,
Oklahoma and Missouri, according to records and surveillance footage obtained by Walmart. In
October 2010, the Joplin, Missouri, police department arrested the pair at a Walmart store in Joplin
and charged them for switching UPC codes on expensive merchandise. Both defendants pleaded
guilty in Missouri in connection with that case but have not yet been sentenced in Missouri State
court.
In addition to the prison sentence and supervised release, the couple was ordered to pay
$48,079.94 in restitution to Walmart and a $100 special assessment. The couple pleaded guilty on
January 13, 2012 to one count of wire fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section
1343, in connection with defrauding Walmart Store #130 in Muskogee, Oklahoma by causing
personnel to use computer communications to transmit fraudulent refund information to Walmart’s
Corporate Headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas.
This case was investigated by the Joplin, Missouri, Police Department, United States Secret
Service Special Agent Samuel Becan, and Walmart Senior Investigator, Mary Jo Meador of the
Asset Protection Investigations Division. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States
Attorney, Kyra E. Jenner.
* * * E N D * * *
The Office of U.S. Attorney
Conner Eldridge
 
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