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Press Release

Knoxville Man Sentenced to 5 Years for Multi-State Burglary Spree of Sports Cards Businesses

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Kentucky

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Jason L. Cates, 38, was sentenced in federal court on Monday to five years in prison by Chief U.S. District Judge Danny C. Reeves for conspiring to transport stolen sports cards and other sports merchandise across state lines. 

According to his plea agreement, from August 19, 2021, to October 14, 2021, Cates burglarized multiple sports cards businesses in Kentucky, Tennessee, Michigan, and Georgia, taking thousands of dollars of sports cards and other merchandise and transporting it across state lines back to his home in Knoxville, Tennessee.  He then sold the cards to buyers he found online and kept the proceeds for his own financial benefit.

In addition to his prison sentence, Cates was also ordered to pay $289,266 in restitution and $50,000 as part of a forfeiture money judgment. 

Under federal law, Cates must serve 85 percent of his prison sentence.  Upon his release, his three-year term of supervision by the U.S. Probation Office will commence.

Carlton S. Shier, IV, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky; Jodi Cohen, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Louisville Field Office; Paul Noel, Chief of the Knoxville Police Department; Frank McCann, Chief of the Cartersville, Georgia Police Department; and Lawrence Weathers, Chief of the Lexington Police Department, jointly announced the sentence.

The investigation was conducted by the FBI, the Knoxville Police Department, the Cartersville Police Department and the Lexington Police Department.  The United States was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Will Moynahan.

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CONTACT: Gabrielle Dudgeon
PHONE: (859) 685-4887

Updated November 1, 2022