Man arrested for scam involving bogus credit card, phone accomplice | News
MEMPHIS, TN- (WMC-TV) - He's been on the run since January 2011, ever since investigators said he pulled the same scam in person using a bogus credit card and a cell phone.
KC Computer general manager Eric Joyner has done it all over the past nine years.
"I've always been hoping that they'd actually catch the guy," said Joyner.
The guy is Trenard Johnson, and is now in jail accused of stealing a $700 laptop from KC back in early 2011.
"So it was even more irritating because of the way that he deceived my employee," said Joyner.
Investigators said Johnson paid with a credit card that got declined.
The terminal advised he contact his bank, and according to police he did just that.
After several minutes, he handed it to the clerk and said, "The bank wants to talk to you."
A voice on the other end of the line walked him through a manual override that forced the credit card charge.
Days later, the credit card company denied the charge, the bank advised it had never been contacted.
The store was stuck with the loss.
Fraud expert Andy Wilson said this scam is common and relies on finding a trusting clerk.
"They get talked through what is potentially a fraud scheme going on, and they become an unwilling accomplice in the whole scheme," said Wilson.
Investigators said Johnson got $2,600 worth of furniture by pulling the same trick at Great American Home Store.
However, the accomplice on the other end of the line is still unknown.
"It would be nice to know, because apparently they've got some kind of professional fraud operation going on," said Joyner.
For now Joyner will settle for the man who once walked out of his store with a free laptop, and is now walking in to 201 poplar with a felony case.
Johnson's listed address is in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.
His bond is set at $60,000, and he goes to court Monday.
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