Tega Cay teen suspected in $15K Craigslist counterfeit cellphone case scam

adys@heraldonline.comJanuary 3, 2013 

— A Tega Cay teen is suspected of using the Internet site Craigslist to try and sell $15,000 in counterfeit cellphone cases - including those used to cover pricey iPhones - after an undercover sting Wednesday, police said.

However, details about whether or not the teen was working alone are unclear, as police have declined to identify the teenager or the teen’s address, where most of the merchandise was seized.

Further, Tega Cay officers were not part of the raid and had no role in the bust or search, said Tega Cay Police Department Capt. David Nelson.

No charges have yet been filed and the teen’s name has not been released because he is a juvenile. Teens under age 17 in South Carolina typically are prosecuted in Family Court.

In part of an ongoing investigation into the selling of phony goods, detectives who had been working with agents from Otter Box set up a controlled buy near Carowinds, according to a written release from the York County Sheriff’s Office. Police seized 272 fake Otter Box covers, 11 Mophine brand cases, and 72 other counterfeit accessories, mostly from the home of the teen in Tega Cay, police said.

The teen cooperated with police after he was caught at the controlled buy and took officers to the house where most of the items were recovered.

It remains unclear if police tipped off Otter Box employees or the company’s surveillance teams that search online for phony goods alerted deputies. Police declined to give any more information.

Otter Box claims on its Web site to be the No. 1 selling case for smartphones. iPhone cases start at $49.95 retail.

Usually, specific crimes that potentially carry 15 years in prison or more for adults give prosecutors the ability to petition a Family Court judge to waive up a juvenile for prosecution, said Kevin Brackett, 16th Circuit solicitor, yet an attempt to waive up cases is “very rare.”

It is unclear if the teen attends high school in Fort Mill. Tega Cay teens are in the attendance zone for Fort Mill High.

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