Trio Sentenced in Amazon Fraud Scheme

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INDIANAPOLIS -

Three Indiana residents have been sentenced to prison for defrauding Amazon of more than $1 million in consumer electronics. U.S. Attorney Josh Minkler's office says the defendants pleaded guilty to federal mail fraud and money laundering charges, among others.

Authorities say Erin Finan and Leah Finan, a husband and wife from the Muncie-Anderson area, stole and sold more than 2,700 consumer electronics, including GoPro digital cameras, Samsung smart watches and Apple Macbooks. They filed false claims with Amazon claiming the electronics they ordered were damaged and not working, then requested and received replacements from Amazon at no charge.

Minkler's office says the Finans made approximately $750,000 from the scheme. The pair pleaded guilty to charges of mail fraud and money laundering. Erin Finan was sentenced to 71 months in prison while Leah Finan received 68 months in prison.

Danijel Glumac of Indianapolis served as the Finans' fence by buying and selling the stolen property across state lines. Glumac would buy the products from the couple, then marked them up and sold them to a buyer in New York.

Glumac made about $500,000 from the scheme. He was sentenced to 24 months in prison on money laundering and fencing charges. 

"Consumer fraud not only unjustly enriches the perpetrator, it causes all of us to pay higher retail prices," Minkler said in a news release. "To those who seek to exploit the convenience of online shopping through fraud, remember this case. You will be caught. You will be prosecuted. And you will go to federal prison for a long time."

Minkler's office says the scheme took place between 2014 and 2016.

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    • Patten is managing partner of Patten Consulting Group.

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