6 eBay Sellers Who Were Sent to Prison in 2021

6 eBay Sellers Who Were Sent to Prison in 2021

Posted by Big Brand on 4th Dec 2021

These six sellers learned the hard way that you can't list anything and everything on eBay.  

October 2021: The FDA got involved in this case when an eBay seller was busted listing illegal weight loss supplements.

An eBay seller was sentenced to 6 months in prison over her listings for a substance the Feds say was extremely dangerous and not fit for human consumption, called 4-Dinitrophenol (DNP). DNP is a chemical substance that, when ingested, causes rapid loss of weight, but is also associated with a high rate of adverse effects including cataracts, hyperthermia, tachycardia, cardiac arrhythmia, and death. In fact, it has caused so many problems that it has been banned SINCE 1938!

July 2021: Former eBay security manager Philip Cooke has been sentenced to 18 months in prison for his role in an intense stalking campaign against a pair of eBay critics. In this MASSIVE bust, former eBay executives, James Baugh and David Harville, were also charged! This particular story is one of the craziest of all time and involved eBay employees launching an all-out stalking and harassment campaign against a pair of bloggers that simply wrote some articles expressing their frustrations with the choices eBay was making. I strongly encourage you to read our blog post eBay Executives FOUND GUILTY of Cyber Stalking because it’s incredible!

July 2021: The Department of Justice said the Ohio man pleaded guilty in July 2019 to conspiring to commit money laundering. As part of his sentencing, he is ordered to pay over $10 million in restitution. According to the government press release:

“He and the other co-conspirators were part of a network that attracted online customers through fraudulent postings for vehicle sales.

“Defendants communicated with victims through email and phone, posing as employees of eBay, and used third parties to open bank accounts in the names of shell corporations that appeared to be affiliated with eBay.

“They instructed victims to wire funds to various third-party bank accounts they set up.

“They claimed to be affiliated with eBay’s Buyer Protection Program, when in fact, no such relationship existed.”

November 2021: A Corridor e-Bayer, who forged and counterfeited over $250,000 in postage and made false statements on international customs forms, was sentenced on November 12, 2021, to three years in federal prison.

Bradley Jon Matheny, age 43, from Marion, Iowa, received the prison term after a March 2, 2021 verdict finding him guilty of seven counts of postage meter stamp forgery and counterfeiting and three counts of export violations. The verdict and sentencing followed a day-long trial that was held in February.

You can learn more about Counterfeit Postage on our blog.

November 2021: A 57-year-old man who sold hundreds of pirate IPTV boxes through eBay in the UK has received a two-year suspended prison sentence. The prosecution, brought by Westminster City Council’s Trading Standards team with help from FACT, revealed that the Westminster resident generated more than £82,000 in proceeds over the years.

December 2021: in Baltimore, Maryland a U.S. District Judge sentenced James Bender, age 36, of Baltimore, Maryland to one year and one day in federal prison, six months of home detention, and three years of supervised release, for federal conspiracy and tax fraud charges.

Bender admitted that beginning in 2014 he agreed to allow a good friend and co-defendant, Saurabh Chawla to sell goods and merchandise through Bender’s eBay accounts because Chawla’s eBay account had previously been suspended due to security concerns.

Bender and Chawla proceeded to use eBay to sell more than $3 million goods and merchandise that had been stolen, including more than $125,000 of iPods that had been stolen from a New Mexico school district and intended for underprivileged children. These stolen iPods were sold to the pair by Kristy Stock who was a New Mexico public school employee responsible for overseeing a program to provide Apple iPods to school children. Stock stole more than 3,000 iPods purchased by the school district and sold them to Chawla. Chawla initially purchased the iPods from Stock on eBay, and they later dealt directly with each other, in emails, texts, and phone calls. Stock admitted that she received more than $800,000 in illegal proceeds from selling stolen iPods worth more than $1 million. In 2019, Chawla purchased Apple products that he believed had been stolen by a different person working at another school district in New Mexico, including 25 iPads for $5,000 in May 2019. After his relative received the stolen goods, Chawla listed them for sale online through eBay at a substantial markup.

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