Feds Seize Legit 49ers Merchandise, But Apparently Unconcerned About Actual Fraud In Ticket Sales

from the priorities dept

Sometime in the next few days — perhaps Thursday or Friday — expect that ICE and the DOJ will announce excitedly how they’ve seized another hundred or so websites that they’ll claim were selling counterfeit NFL merchandise — and maybe a couple sites that were planning to embed streams of the game. It’s become a Super Bowl Weekend tradition because the feds have nothing better to do, apparently. Two local stories that came out this morning, however, suggest that the feds’ priorities are out of whack. According to a CBS morning radio report in San Francisco, Homeland Security raided a guy selling 49ers merchandise on the street corner at a gas station. They told him that they knew he was selling counterfeit material and seized it… only to find out soon after that the merchandise was legit. Way to do your research, Homeland Security:

Meanwhile, at the same time, there was actual fraud going on, as someone who spent $5,900 on Superbowl tickets on Craigslist was scammed and sent a note that just said “Goo Ravens!!! LOL” instead.
Amazingly, the guy who sent that put a return address on the package and had spoken to the buyers a bunch on the phone. So you would think that, perhaps instead of swooping down on legitimate vendors selling legitimate goods, perhaps law enforcement could be out there arresting folks like this scammer instead. But, I guess that kind of stuff isn’t as important to big companies like the NFL.

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Comments on “Feds Seize Legit 49ers Merchandise, But Apparently Unconcerned About Actual Fraud In Ticket Sales”

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MikeW (profile) says:

Just imagining the conversation

Officer 1: Hey look, that guy’s selling some swag!

Officer 2: Hey, good catch, we better confiscate it and shut him down!

Officer 1: Why? He looks legit.

Officer 2: He’s not. I just know it.

Officer 1: Shouldn’t we…you know…check with the team first?

Officer 2: Nah, if we’re wrong, then we’ll give him back his stuff and no harm no foul.

Officer 1: Well, except for all the lost sales due to his stuff being in our warehouses.

Officer 2: You obviously haven’t been here long, or you’d know how it works.

Officer 3: Yeah, and this is a great way to score some free gear for our kids!

Officer 1: Ah, well, in that case, let’s do this!

(…..Much later….)

Mike Masnick: But what about that guy who sold a fake ticket on craigslist?

DHS: We can’t go after everyone! Only those from whom we can get free swag and domains to plaster our logo on. What can we get from random craigslist dude?

Anonymous Coward says:

A fool and his money are soon parted!

First of all she should have used a reputable escrow service, as wiring $5,900 directly to a stranger on Craigslist is DUMB DUMB DUMB.

Secondly unless the perp is an undocumented/illegal immigrant, this whole wire fraud thing shouldn’t be ICE’s department. That sounds more like the FBI or Secret Service’s work. Whoever takes the case I suspect we’re going to hear a follow-up real soon. He’s used his real name alongside the phone # and email address on other ads around the web. He seems to have been brazenly committing wire fraud via Craigslist and Ebay for the last few years and the media even questioned him before (look up “Scam Targets South Beach Spring Breakers”).

Anonymous Coward says:

it’s so much easier to arrest an innocent person! by the time they have gotten over the shock of the arrest, been bullied into accepting a plea bargain of a gazillion years in prison instead of a treble gazillion years, all for doing absolutely nothing wrong, nothing illegal, the Feds have had what they want, ie, the glory of another terrorist plot destroyed’ to worry about any backlash. and it’s another place in jail that’s filled!!

Anonymous Coward says:

Wait, what, uh… DHS? Pardon me?

There was a question a while back regarding what exactly, DHS’ mandate was. No one had a good answer. Most of us were sort of assuming it had something to do with something that wasn’t expertly (and in some cases I use that term loosely) covered by the police, fbi, cia, nsa, tsa, atf, (did I forget any acronyms?) customs, or military – perhaps “domestic counter terrorism” or some similar political buzzphrase like that, that’s already covered by the above acronyms.

We were clearly wrong; their mandate is to act as counterfeit police. They do not seem very good at it, so we can only assume they need more funding.

Can someone please convinve the US government right now, that DHS has no actual functions beside hemmoraging money and harrassing people?

No? How about now then?


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