FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
AUSA VICKIE E. LEDUC or
MARCIA MURPHY at 410-209-4885
APRIL 20, 2007
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WESTERN MARYLAND WOMAN SENTENCED FOR COUNTERFEITING
OVER $250,000 IN METERED POSTAGE
Baltimore, Maryland - U.S. District Judge Andre M. Davis sentenced Julie Hoffman, age 33, of Lonaconing, Maryland, today to30 months in prison followed by two years of supervised release for counterfeiting metered postage, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein. Judge Davis also ordered Hoffman to pay restitution of $251,011.91.
According to the statement of facts presented to the court at her January 12, 2007 guilty plea, Hoffman owns and operates Hoffman Candles and Hoffman Mailing Solutions in Lonaconing, Maryland, mailing about 1,000 envelopes and packages daily for several individual customers and businesses. Hoffman advertised that she could mail any item from Hoffman Candles to anywhere in the country, regardless of the weight or size of the item, for 20 cents.
In 2003, Hoffman began to counterfeit metered U.S. postage by printing a legitimate set of postage from Stamps.com and Endicia.com, and then making copies of this postage on her own adhesive backed labels. Hoffman provided her employees with this counterfeit postage to use in mailing packages and letters, but did not tell them that the postage was counterfeit. Within a couple years, she was counterfeiting almost all of the postage in her business. As a result of the scheme, the Postal Service lost at least $251,011.90.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the investigative work performed by the United States Postal Inspection Service. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Kwame J. Manley, who is prosecuting the case.