McHenry woman sentenced 5 years for secret shopper scheme
A McHenry woman was sentenced Tuesday to 5 years in federal prison and ordered to pay restitution after she helped run a secret shopper scheme, the U.S. Attorney's office said in a news release.
Gloria Denise Ford, 45, who pleaded guilty in July to mail fraud, was ordered to pay about $69,000 in restitution, and also serve three years of supervised released.
In the scheme, victims received at least one counterfeit money order. They were then told to deposit the money order in their bank, withdraw a certain percentage as payment for their services, and then go to the nearest Western Union and wire transfer the proceeds as instructed.
Ford mailed more than $1,000,000 in counterfeit money orders to victims around the country, and received at least $12,000 in payments, the U.S. Attorney's office said.
Victims then reported their experience, believing they were a secret shopper hired to evaluate a local business, according to the news release.
During the scheme, Ford received about 10 packages from Nigeria, the United Kingdom and France, which contained counterfeit money orders ranging from $800 to $1,000 each.
"The participants in the scheme received the proceeds via the wire transfers before the victims learned that the money orders were counterfeit," the news release said.
- Northwest Herald
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