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A Glendale man is suspected of using fake authorization codes for pre-paid debit cards to con retailers out of nearly $6,400 worth of televisions, golf clubs and lottery tickets, according to Phoenix police.
Phoenix police said they arrested 27-year-old Adam Alex Miller at his home near 51st Avenue and Thunderbird Road on March 6.
Miller is accused of using a fraudulent code to activate a “forced sale option” on a Vanilla pre-paid debit card with no money loaded on it to purchase items from various retailers around Phoenix, according to court records.
Miller is accused of purchasing two televisions worth about $1,200, golf clubs worth about $600 and $4,450 worth of lottery tickets in five separate transactions from August 2017 until as recently as Feb. 9, according to a probably cause statement submitted to a court by police after his arrest.
The five businesses defrauded were Jerry’s Golf Balls, ARCO AM/PM, Valley Wide TV Repair, Valero, and Queens Market identified Miller as the man in surveillance videos based on photo I.D. or a picture lineup given by police, according to records.
Miller allegedly used this scheme to buy, or attempt to buy, over $79,000 of merchandise, records state.
According to court documents, the “forced sale option” is supposed to be used for a customer who is making a purchase for a significant dollar amount with the pre-loaded card. The merchant calls the bank and receives a one-time code to allow the sale to go through.
However, Miller is accused of giving the the code himself to the merchant or pretended to call the bank himself and get the code, according to court records.
Many cashiers and business owners are unaware of this scheme, police say.
Miller is facing charges of fraudulent schemes and theft. His next court appearance is scheduled for March 13.
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