Salt Lake City, Utah – A California man was sentenced to 12 months and one day of imprisonment and ordered by the court to pay over $48,000 in restitution after he admitted to conspiracy to commit wire fraud by participating in a telemarketing scheme that sold fraudulent products to the public.
According to court documents, Charles Robert Brewer, aka “Robert Brewer” or “Scott Brewer,” 59, of Manhattan Beach, California, joined a telemarketing conspiracy that spanned several states, including the District of Utah, and caused millions of dollars in losses between June 2016 to February 2017. In furtherance of the conspiracy, Brewer processed payments quickly so that he and his co-conspirators could process the victims’ credit card transactions through merchant accounts and then transfer the victims’ money to safe accounts before the victims realized they had been defrauded and thereby demand refunds, and before the credit card companies recognized the fraud and shut down the merchant accounts. The telemarketing rooms sold different fraudulent products, including but not limited to, “Amazon rooms and accompanying advertising,” “government grants,” and “business opportunities.” Additionally, Brewer helped recruit “nominees,” persons whom he used to set up the merchant accounts to run the fraudulent transactions through without the nominees’ knowledge of the fraud. Brewer helped fabricate fraudulent financial documents and bank statements to trick credit card companies into setting up the merchant accounts. He helped his co-conspirators impersonate satisfied customers to deceive auditors. Brewer also personally sent emails to a payment processor wherein he impersonated a merchant account owner to make fraudulent excuses for the high number of chargebacks to keep the merchant accounts open after the credit card companies became suspicious.
In addition to his term of imprisonment, the court ordered Mr. Brewer to serve 24 months of supervised release and to pay $48,639.86 in restitution.
U.S. Attorney Trina A. Higgins of the District of Utah made the announcement.
The case was investigated jointly by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Salt Lake City Field Office.
Assistant United States Attorney Todd C. Bouton of the District of Utah prosecuted the case.