2-11-2012Two New Yorkers admit to Million-Dollar Walmart, T-Mobile Scam
Two men from New York City admitted Friday to ripping off Walmart and T-Mobile in a multi-state scam that federal prosecutors said cost the companies nearly $1 million.
Prosecutors said Ralbert Olacio, 23, and Edwin Rodriguez, 22, of Brooklyn, N.Y., called themselves the Interstate Boys. Court records reveal the pair traveled Interstate 95 from Maine to Florida using stolen identities to open more than 400 T-Mobile accounts along the way.
"After establishing the fraudulent accounts, the defendants traveled to over 350 different Walmart stores located from Maine to Florida on approximately 600 occasions to complete activation of the accounts and to purchase approximately 2,000 discounted cellular handsets for resale," according to information released Friday by U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman.
The pair pleaded guilty in federal court to making calls they did not pay for and selling the devices at a profit.
Late last month, a third man, 23-year-old Alfredo Rodriguez, also of Brooklyn, pleaded guilty to one count of wire- fraud conspiracy in connection with the scam.
The defendants face up to 20 years in prison when they are sentenced this spring.