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Couple exploited website glitch for free merchandise -Lowes

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More details here:
http://oceancountyprosecutor.org/brick-couple-targets-lowes-unpa...

Romela Velazquez being charged with 2nd degree Computer Criminal Activity for accessing a computer system with the purpose to defraud,
2nd degree Theft by Deception for attempting to obtain merchandise totaling approximately $258,068.01 (pre-tax) and 3rd degree Theft by Deception for the receipt of approximately $12,971.23 (pre-tax) worth of merchandise without payment.

For his role in the fraud scheme, Kimy Velazquez (Romela’s husband), was charged with 3rd degree receipt of stolen property and 3rd degree fencing.

I'm curious what she did and how she did it. Per the law, she accused of telling a lie(s) to Lowes. I wonder what lie she told.
http://law.justia.com/codes/new-jersey/2013/title-2c/section-2c-...

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> Approximately $2,500 Victoria Secret Underwear

They didn't get that at Lowe's at least not in the Lowes near me.

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I hope it wasn't exploiting a FW cashback like last time.

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"Authorities declined to provide details on the computer glitch."

It was not a "computer glitch" and I don't condone the theft, but Lowes site is garbage.  I gave up trying to buy so many things there because it was unusable.  Orders disappearing into never-never land.  One time moving coupons used up, but the order errors out. There is some stuff I ordered more than a year ago and delivered, but is still showing in "Pending" status.   I am willing to bet the site was outsourced to some giant IT sweatshop, coded in India by people who are paid peanuts, so they don't give a crap. No wonder it is full of security holes. 
 

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Need to hire them to patch up the security hole. Reward, not punish.

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If there is a loophole, take a wheelbarrow full of stuff to make it last, don't rent an 18-wheeler and fill it to the brim.

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nyseGUY said:   If there is a loophole, take a wheelbarrow full of stuff to make it last, don't rent an 18-wheeler and fill it to the brim.
  
They probably called the store to verify the sale.

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Where's the line between finding a deal and criminality? Is it just how much it costs the store and whether a prosecutor feels like bothering? There is likely an intent element to these crimes. Found a good deal may not equal intent.

Edit. The lies told here might determine the outcome. 

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bobley said:   Where's the line between finding a deal and criminality? Is it just how much it costs the store and whether a prosecutor feels like bothering? There is likely an intent element to these crimes. Found a good deal may not equal intent.

Edit. The lies told here might determine the outcome. 

  
"Good deal/Hot deal" is an intent of getting the best price.... which is now can be criminalized.  The store not just hold the right to refuse the transaction, but now can criminalize you for attempt to make them agree to the transaction.

A long time ago I bought a Table for like $30 - $20 coupon - $20 rebate = -$10.  I got the table, the coupon worked, and I got the rebate too.  Now, this can be a criminal act.  Scary!!!!

Last year, twice I put down 2 orders (different time and different product).  Got email for process order, and later got email for cancel order.  Lucky me, I didn't get email with a subpoena to go to court.

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WorkerAnt said:   
bobley said:   Where's the line between finding a deal and criminality? Is it just how much it costs the store and whether a prosecutor feels like bothering? There is likely an intent element to these crimes. Found a good deal may not equal intent.

Edit. The lies told here might determine the outcome. 

  
"Good deal/Hot deal" is an intent of getting the best price.... which is now can be criminalized.  The store not just hold the right to refuse the transaction, but now can criminalize you for attempt to make them agree to the transaction.

A long time ago I bought a Table for like $30 - $20 coupon - $20 rebate = -$10.  I got the table, the coupon worked, and I got the rebate too.  Now, this can be a criminal act.  Scary!!!!

Last year, twice I put down 2 orders (different time and different product).  Got email for process order, and later got email for cancel order.  Lucky me, I didn't get email with a subpoena to go to court.

If this line is indeed based upon amount and willingness to prosecute, then things have gotten nuts. Ignoring that the rebate likely had limiting terms, what if you could have bought 1,000 tables.

Look what's happened to legitimate returns retailers don't want to accept despite the original terms of sale. Now it's returns abuse to return items you bought with a receipt. But it's not abuse for retailers to charge as high as price as possible. Market economics is acceptable, market behavior is not. Free market it seems not.    

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bobley said:   
WorkerAnt said:   
bobley said:   Where's the line between finding a deal and criminality? Is it just how much it costs the store and whether a prosecutor feels like bothering? There is likely an intent element to these crimes. Found a good deal may not equal intent.

Edit. The lies told here might determine the outcome. 

  
"Good deal/Hot deal" is an intent of getting the best price.... which is now can be criminalized.  The store not just hold the right to refuse the transaction, but now can criminalize you for attempt to make them agree to the transaction.

A long time ago I bought a Table for like $30 - $20 coupon - $20 rebate = -$10.  I got the table, the coupon worked, and I got the rebate too.  Now, this can be a criminal act.  Scary!!!!

Last year, twice I put down 2 orders (different time and different product).  Got email for process order, and later got email for cancel order.  Lucky me, I didn't get email with a subpoena to go to court.

If this line is indeed based upon amount and willingness to prosecute, then things have gotten nuts. Ignoring that the rebate likely had limiting terms, what if you could have bought 1,000 tables.

Look what's happened to legitimate returns retailers don't want to accept despite the original terms of sale. Now it's returns abuse to return items you bought with a receipt. But it's not abuse for retailers to charge as high as price as possible. Market economics is acceptable, market behavior is not. Free market it seems not.    

  
They already have the option of refuse the sell.  But if they accept the transaction and shipped to that person, it is done.  The transaction is a contract, bother side agree and sign it without force.  You agree sign the contract but cry about it later, it's your fault.

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bobley said:   Where's the line between finding a deal and criminality? Is it just how much it costs the store and whether a prosecutor feels like bothering? There is likely an intent element to these crimes. Found a good deal may not equal intent.

Edit. The lies told here might determine the outcome. 

  
I'm guessing the "lies" might be that they tampered with the web data.  Perhaps the site committed the cardinal sin of trusting the client.

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bookreader54321 said:   > Approximately $2,500 Victoria Secret Underwear

They didn't get that at Lowe's at least not in the Lowes near me.

  
Apparently they confiscated all merchandise available, not just Lowes. I guess there were other merchants that had glitches in their systems too?

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rsuaver said:   
bookreader54321 said:   > Approximately $2,500 Victoria Secret Underwear

They didn't get that at Lowe's at least not in the Lowes near me.

  
Apparently they confiscated all merchandise available, not just Lowes. I guess there were other merchants that had glitches in their systems too?

  
They may have just followed this advertisement for "glitch deals" => https://www.facebook.com/Glitchdeals/photos/a.1247242445333643.1...

That would make me believe Lowe's is advertising that with their glitches, deals are to be had?
 

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I guess I missed my chance for pay back of the countless hours NO customer service, unknowledgable staff - if yiu can even find one.....has cost me over the years. Lowe's rhymes with BLOWS.

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WorkerAnt said:   
bobley said:   Where's the line between finding a deal and criminality? Is it just how much it costs the store and whether a prosecutor feels like bothering? There is likely an intent element to these crimes. Found a good deal may not equal intent.

Edit. The lies told here might determine the outcome. 

  
"Good deal/Hot deal" is an intent of getting the best price.... which is now can be criminalized.  The store not just hold the right to refuse the transaction, but now can criminalize you for attempt to make them agree to the transaction.

A long time ago I bought a Table for like $30 - $20 coupon - $20 rebate = -$10.  I got the table, the coupon worked, and I got the rebate too.  Now, this can be a criminal act.  Scary!!!!

Last year, twice I put down 2 orders (different time and different product).  Got email for process order, and later got email for cancel order.  Lucky me, I didn't get email with a subpoena to go to court.

  
There's a difference between finding a coupon combination that the store accepts, and figuring out that, if you (for example) change a character in a URL, it sets the price of the shopping cart to zero.  It certainly sounds like the latter is a better descriptor of what was going on here.  That's no more "finding a good deal" than discovering that if you bump a vending machine at a certain angle it will drop a free bag of chips is "finding a good deal."  

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Warrant (159.81kB)
Disclaimer
Because I'm interested, attached is copy of the arrest warrant and press release.


In summary, the arrest warrant states:
....<Romela>  ...... <used the internet>  ....for the purpose of executing a scheme to defraud exceeding $5k in value from ...<Lowes>, Contrary to the provisions of law 2C:20 - 25C, and against the peace of this state, the government and dignity of the same.

Within the Jurisdiction of this court, between Aug 8, 2016 and Dec 15 2016; did attempt to commit theft by deception by purposely and or knowingly utilize her computer to access Lowes on line sales system with the intent to defraud by 'Glitching' said system, attempting to purchase various items knowing the funds to purchase said items were non existent. These incidents occurred between the aforementioned dates totaling attempts of $258k in violation of law 2C:20 - 4

Within the Jurisdiction of this court, between Aug 8, 2016 and Dec 15 2016; did commit theft by deception by purposely obtaining merchandise while 'Glitching' and defrauding the Lowes Corporate computer system and receiving between $7k and $10k in merchandise through on line sales depriving the merchant Lowes stores of payment, in violation of law 2c:20-4a

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camiolo said:   Because I'm interested, attached is copy of the arrest warrant and press release.


In summary, the arrest warrant states:
....<Romela>  ...... <used the internet>  ....for the purpose of executing a scheme to defraud exceeding $5k in value from ...<Lowes >, Contrary to the provisions of law 2C:20 - 25C, and against the peace of this state, the government and dignity of the same.

Within the Jurisdiction of this court, between Aug 8, 2016 and Dec 15 2016; did attempt to commit theft by deception by purposely and or knowingly utilize her computer to access Lowes on line sales system with the intent to defraud by 'Glitching' said system, attempting to purchase various items knowing the funds to purchase said items were non existent. These incidents occurred between the aforementioned dates totaling attempts of $258k in violation of law 2C:20 - 4

Within the Jurisdiction of this court, between Aug 8, 2016 and Dec 15 2016; did commit theft by deception by purposely obtaining merchandise while 'Glitching' and defrauding the Lowes Corporate computer system and receiving between $7k and $10k in merchandise through on line sales depriving the merchant Lowes stores of payment, in violation of law 2c:20-4a

  Sounds like they may have found a bug where orders went through even though the debit card used to pay for them didn't actually have the funds.  If so, that's no different from using an invalid credit card to buy from a store because you've realized that the Point-of-Sale system's connection to the network is down, and isn't actually checking card validity.  

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The whole 'Victoria's Secret' stuff and the Camera made me realize they used the money from selling the Lowes stuff to buy those things.

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 Congratulations to him for being a 40-year-old guy able to snag a 24-year-old wife! 

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