Texas woman sent to prison for 19-year internet stolen merchandise scheme

By: U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Texas
| Published 10/01/2020

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HOUSTON, TX -- A 63-year-old resident of Dallas has been ordered to federal prison for her role in a multi-million dollar interstate theft ring involving merchandise sold on eBay, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.

Kim Richardson pleaded guilty Dec. 17, 2019.

Today, U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen ordered her to serve a total of 54 months in federal prison to be immediately followed by three years of supervised release. She has also agreed to pay $3.8 million in restitution. In handing down the sentence, the court noted it would be virtually impossible to identify all of the victims in this long-running scheme.

As part of her plea, Richardson admitted she participated in a conspiracy that spanned from August 2000 through April 2019. During that time, she shoplifted items as she traveled throughout the United States. She would then sell the stolen merchandise to buyers on eBay and via direct internet sales and sent it to them via the U.S. mail, Federal Express and United Parcel Service.

Richardson stole items from numerous retail stores. She used shoplifting tools to disable security devices and would exit the store by placing the stolen merchandise in a large black bag she carried. Richardson assisted in the sale of the items on the internet as well as packaging and mailing the stolen items.

Buyers sent approximately $3.8 million throughout the scheme into four PayPal accounts linked to Richardson.

Richardson was permitted to remain on bond and voluntarily surrender to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

The Secret Service and FBI conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Belinda Beek prosecuted the case.

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