FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
TUESDAY - January 27, 2009
FAKE FURNITURE BUSINESS OWNER SENTENCED TO PRISON
RALEIGH - United States Attorney George E.B. Holding announced today that United States District Judge Terrence W. Boyle sentenced HENRY RAYFORD PRIVETTE, JR., 55, of Johns Island, South Carolina, to 168 months’ imprisonment followed by three years of supervised release. The Court also imposed restitution in the amount of $1,121,551.00.
A Federal Grand Jury returned a Criminal Indictment on November 28, 2007. On August 13, 2008, a jury convicted PRIVETTE of 10 counts of wire fraud. PRIVETTE, doing business as Carolina Furniture, operated an Internet-based furniture business in Calabash, North Carolina, between 2000 and late 2003, taking orders from customers over the telephone and requiring deposits, then promising to order furniture but failing to deliver the furniture or provide a refund. During that time period, PRIVETTE defrauded hundreds of customers in transactions involving millions of dollars.
Mr. Holding commented: “The defendant in this case defrauded many innocent customers out of their money as part of a complex fraud. The sentence in this case is a just result and we are grateful for the Court’s decision.”
The case was investigated by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Postal Inspection Service, and the North Carolina Attorney General’s Office. Assistant United States Attorneys Thom B. Murphy and Jason Cowley served as prosecution for the government.
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