An Irvington man has been sentenced to 37 months in prison for taking part in a scam that cost home improvement stores millions of dollars, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.
Reginald Phillips, 56, had previously pleaded guilty to a count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Four others who took part in the scam had also pleaded guilty.
Philips was described as the ringleader of the scam by authorities.
For four years beginning in 2013, the scammers purchased expensive merchandise from stores in New Jersey and elsewhere on the East Coast using checks with false names but legitimate routing and account numbers. The scammers also used fraudulent checks to open store credit accounts, which they also used to buy merchandise.
During many of the transactions, Phillips displayed fake driver’s licenses that had been created by one of the other conspirators.
Altogether they stole about $2.4 million from stores New Jersey. They also defrauded stores in New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, North Carolina, Georgia, Virginia, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and South Carolina, authorities said.
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