Home Depot Employee Accused Of Making $26,000 Off Of Fake Returns

We’ve heard of shoplifters trying to “return” products they never actually purchased for cash. And we’ve heard of employees pretending to enter a return and then taking that returned item and fencing it. But this may be the first time we’ve heard of a retail employee using customer’s personal info to cook up fake returns for illicit profit.

According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the scam went a little something like this: The employee would gather personal ID info for customers along with product codes; basically all the info he would need if someone made a legitimate return. A second man allegedly would then text the employee to tell him how much money he needed. That’s when they would figure out which products should be fake-returned and the money from the returns would go onto Home Depot gift cards that would cashed at other stores or sold.

The warrant states that the employee “did enter real and fictitious drivers license numbers at least 42 times into the computer system of Home Depot to make it appear as if the persons listed in the drivers licenses actually returned the products.”

Their scam was successful enough to score them $26,000… and nearly two dozen felony charges, including identity fraud, computer theft, computer forgery and racketeering.