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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Illinois

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 7, 2021

Ticket Broker Convicted in Scheme To Fraudulently Sell Chicago White Sox Tickets

CHICAGO — A federal jury has convicted a ticket broker on fraud charges for scheming to sell thousands of discounted Chicago White Sox tickets without the team’s authorization.

BRUCE LEE, who owned Chicago-based Great Tickets, provided more than $100,000 to two White Sox ticket sellers in exchange for receiving complimentary and discounted game tickets that Lee would then sell on the online marketplace StubHub.  The ticket sellers – JAMES COSTELLO and WILLIAM O’NEIL – fraudulently generated the tickets without the team’s authorization.

During the 2016 to 2019 baseball seasons, Lee earned approximately $868,369 by selling more than 34,000 tickets that he fraudulently obtained from Costello and O’Neil.  As a result of the scheme, the White Sox suffered a loss of approximately $1 million.

Evidence presented at the four-day trial in U.S. District Court in Chicago revealed that when questioned by the FBI, Lee stated that he considered the payments the “American way, take care of a guy, and you get taken care of.”

The jury on Wednesday convicted Lee, 35, of Chicago, on all eleven counts of wire fraud.  Each count carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison.  U.S. District Judge Matthew F. Kennelly set sentencing for Jan. 10, 2022.

The conviction was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; and Emmerson Buie, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Office of the FBI.  The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Matthew Schneider and David Green.

Costello and O’Neil, both of New Lenox, Ill., previously pleaded guilty and admitted their roles in the scheme.  They are awaiting sentencing.

Topic(s): 
Cyber Crime
Financial Fraud
Updated October 7, 2021