Texas man pleads guilty in Buffalo, fined $250,000

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — A man from both Texas and Mexico pleaded guilty to a crime which carries a maximum sentance of 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

Alcalar Vasquez, also known as Noberto DeRivas, also known as Abraham Rivas-Rios, 43 pleaded guilty before U.S. District Court Judge Richard Arcara to possession of 15 or more unauthorized access devices. Assistant U.S. Attorney Marie Grisanti handled the case which spanned between November 2012 to March 2013.

Grisanti said the defendant obtained high-end merchandise at various Home Depot stores in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and New York by scanning bar codes of lower priced items and then taking the high priced items out of the store.

One example Grisanti said was the defendant scanning a sink priced at just under $60, but leaving the store with a sink which was priced at just over $140. The defendant then returned the higher priced merchandise at a different Home Depot location for stored value cards.

Home Depot became aware of the scam early in 2013, and then took action in early March when the defendant attempted to use a California driver’s license bearing his picture under a different name in order to return merchandise valued at just over $700. Home Depot called Niagara County Sheriff’s investigators who found the defendant to have 20 false California drivers licenses in three names, along with 17 Home Depot stored value cards worth approximately $5,910.

The defendant obtained $77,577.90 in merchandise from the Home Depot stores.

He will be sentenced on March 4 before Judge Arcara.

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