WASHINGTON — An Oregon man was sentenced today for selling counterfeit computer software with a retail value of more than $1 million, and for aggravated identity theft and mail fraud, announced Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division Matthew Friedrich and U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon Karin J. Immergut.
Jeremiah Joseph Mondello, 23, of Eugene, Ore., was sentenced to four years in prison for criminal copyright infringement, aggravated identity theft and mail fraud. For the aggravated identity theft conviction, Mondello was sentenced to a mandatory 24 months in prison, which will be served consecutively with the 24 month prison sentence he received for his criminal copyright infringement and mail fraud convictions. U.S. District Court Judge Ann L. Aiken also ordered Mondello to three years of supervised release and to perform 450 hours of community service following his release from prison. Mondello forfeited more than $225,000 in cash proceeds from the copyright infringement and computer-related equipment used to commit the crime.
According to documents filed in court, between December 2005 and October 2007, Mondello initiated thousands of separate online auctions, using more than 40 fictitious usernames and online payment accounts to sell copies of counterfeit software, and received illicit money from those sales. Mondello generated more than $400,000 in personal profit as a result of these sales.
Mondello admitted to stealing individuals’ personal information and using the stolen identities to establish online payment accounts. Mondello acquired victims’ names, bank account numbers and passwords by using a computer keystroke logger program. The keystroke logger program installed itself on victims’ computers and recorded the victim’s name and bank account information as the information was being typed. The program then electronically sent the information back to Mondello which he then used to establish the online payment accounts.
"Some criminals may view online auctions as an anonymous means to sell stolen intellectual property, but this case proves that law enforcement can identify and prosecute offenders who attempt such schemes," said Acting Assistant Attorney General Matthew Friedrich. "The Department's initiative to combat online auction piracy targets those who enter the online marketplace with unclean hands."
"The severity of the sentence sends a clear message that persons who illegally deal in intellectual property will be held accountable. This was a very sophisticated copyright infringement case and we appreciate the investigative assistance of the Software and Information Industry Association and Immigration and Customs Enforcement," said U.S. Attorney Karin J. Immergut
This case is part of the Department of Justice’s ongoing initiative to combat online auction piracy. Including today’s sentencing, the Department has secured 29 convictions involving online auction and commercial distribution of counterfeit software. The Department’s initiative to combat online auction piracy is just one of several steps being undertaken to address the losses caused by intellectual property theft and hold responsible those engaged in criminal copyright infringement.
Mondello’s case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Cyber Crimes Center and offices in Seattle, Portland, Ore., and Medford, Ore. The case is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney Marc Miller of the Criminal Division’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section and Sean B. Hoar, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon. The Software and Information Industry Association, a trade association which represents leading computer software companies, provided assistance to the investigation.