I wrote last month about Amazon banning customers for returning too many items. Bans are coming down for those who request too many refunds, return incorrect items or say they’re returning an item for a different reason than most other customers.
But it turns out that a ban is not the worst thing that could happen if you go overboard with your returns. You might even go to jail. Three individuals have just received lengthy prison sentences for their involvement in a scam that defrauded Amazon out of $1.2 million.
A couple in Indiana ordered over 2,700 electronic items from Amazon including GoPro digital cameras, Xboxes, smartwatches, tablets and laptops and then reported them as damaged. Once Amazon replaced the products, they would sell them to a third person, who then sold them to a buyer in New York. The couple made around $750,000 running the scam while that third person made approximately $500,000.
The three individuals were sentenced to 71, 68 and 24 months in prison respectively Engadget reports.
To pull off their scheme they created hundreds of false identities and fake accounts. The three defendants have been ordered to pay $1,218,504 in restitution.