Shelton Man Pleads Guilty to Defrauding Amazon
Vanessa Roberts Avery, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, and David Sundberg, Special Agent in Charge of the New Haven Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, today announced that OSHANE STEWART, 30, of Shelton, waived his right to be indicted and pleaded guilty yesterday before U.S. District Judge Alvin W. Thompson in Hartford to a charge stemming from his fraud against Amazon.com, Inc. (“Amazon”).
According to court documents and statements made in court, Stewart created multiple vendor accounts with Amazon allowing him to sell merchandise through the website on a third-party basis. He often opened the accounts using false names, email addresses and other identifying information. After setting up the accounts, Stewart represented to Amazon that he was shipping it valuable merchandise to be held for sale by the company. In reality, he would not ship the merchandise, and would later falsely claim that it had been lost, supporting his false claims with fabricated documents. Amazon sent Stewart a series of refunds for the purportedly lost merchandise.
Stewart admitted that his criminal conduct resulted in a loss to Amazon of approximately $742,231.16.
Stewart pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud, an offense that carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years. Judge Thompson scheduled sentencing for January 23, 2023. Stewart is released on bond pending sentencing.
Stewart is the third individual to plead guilty in connection with this scheme. On February 10, 2022, Stewart’s brother, Kenoy Stewart, pleaded guilty and admitted that his conduct resulted in a loss to Amazon exceeding $1 million. Rajhni Yankana pleaded guilty on August 26, 2022. Each awaits sentencing.
This matter is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Conor M. Reardon and Christopher W. Schmeisser.