A US man is facing up to 20 years in prison after being arrested by the FBI and charged with mail fraud for operating a scheme during which time he fraudulently obtained hundreds of Cisco computer networking parts.
Craig Stanland, a 40-year-old Connecticut resident, was arrested on Oct. 1 and released on a $US100,000 bond after appearing before US Magistrate Judge for the District of Connecticut William Garfinkel.
According to a criminal complaint unsealed against Stanland on Oct. 21, the Connecticut man had been abusing Cisco's service contract policy by making fraudulent warranty claims since October 2012.
Altogether, Stanland used half a dozen aliases to purchase or control about 14 service contracts, according to the complaint. Under its service contract policy, Cisco will send out replacement parts for defective hardware, with the provision that the policy holder send the defective equipment back to Cisco.
Stanland is alleged to have obtained more than 400 Cisco parts throughout his year-long scheme, with prices ranging from $500 to $8,600, according to the affidavit. He is said to have shipped those parts to various addresses, including to his Connecticut home and to his wife's business in Brooklyn.
“Rather than returning the allegedly defective Cisco part under the service contract (as he was supposed to do), Stanland usually either returned no parts at all or instead mailed to Cisco third-party, off-brand parts,” according to the complaint.
An investigation into Stanland's internet usage revealed that hundreds of fraudulent service requests – even those under the aliases – were issued from an internet protocol (IP) address that was issued to the Connecticut man by Cablevision.