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Ex-GameStop VP jailed for 51 months over $1.7 million fraud charges

Tuesday, 12th March 2013 12:39 GMT By Dave Cook

Ex-GameStop VP of corporate communications and public affairs Frank Christopher Olivera has been charged with fraud in US federal court, after funnelling over over $1.7 million from the retailer. He faces 51 months in prison.

GI.biz reports that Olivera invented a company called Cloud Communications LLC, and through fake invoices and a fabricated employee, stole over $1.7 million from Gamestop. He pleaded guilty to all charges in November 2012.

The US Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Texas issued a full statement on Olivera’s sentencing.

The statement reads, “According to documents filed in the case, beginning in July 2009 and continuing to April 2011, Olivera defrauded Gamestop by submitting false and fraudulent invoices for vendor services from a fictitious company, “Cloud Communications LLC,” which he owned and controlled.

“Olivera directed Gamestop to send the payments from Gamestop’s offices in Grapevine to Cloud Communications LLC in Las Vegas and Lake Tahoe, Nevada and in Canada. In addition to creating a fictitious company, Olivera also created a fictitious person, “Jennifer Miller,” to serve as the point of contact at Cloud Communications.

“Upon receipt of payments from Gamestop, Olivera would deposit the checks into a bank account held by Cloud Communications and then would transfer the fraudulently obtained funds into his personal bank account.

“The overall scheme to defraud involved $1,965,900 in fraudulent invoices.”

At the time of writing Olivera has almost returned all of the $1.7 million to Gamestop but must also pay $134,651 in fees related to the trial.

What do you make of this? Let us know below.

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5 Comments

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  1. melonbuster1

    Good.. these guys are crooked. . This company has been robbing the public for years since the very 1st trade. . I can’t wait until September-November of this year when the bleeding stops. No more used game rape. Only the last generation will still fall prey to these predators. Feeding on the weak broke cash strapped consumer. I hope they impose more fines and jail time to this crook!

    #1 1 year ago
  2. Cobra951

    I don’t understand that attitude. I remember when used games sold for less than 50% of the price of new, so to me, GS is a giant ripoff on used games. So I don’t buy them, ever–simple. I don’t trade games away either. (That’s just me.) But if others find value in that market, why should it be taken away from them? Let them do what they want, and let GS or whoever reap the profits. Why limit options, especially so angrily?

    #2 1 year ago
  3. salarta

    @1: And naturally the needs of rental stores and services of all types, being able to access and play a game long after any servers used for verification processes are taken down, not having to buy another copy of a game if the console breaks down, and the ability to play an obscure game that either has no new copies available or would be too expensive new, are all acceptable sacrifices just to get back at one company. Losing access to your own purchases or not being able to buy/play a product at all is all worth it if it hurts the revenue stream of a single company that will likely remain in business regardless, right?

    Some of what I just noted is dependent on how they would implement an anti-used games feature, but I don’t see any way of introducing an anti-used games feature that doesn’t cause needless collateral damage for consumers and/or all rental businesses and services. In the worst case scenario, anti-used games features would put a lot more companies than just Gamestop out of business, and put a lot of people out of work, in addition to screwing over people that love games in the long-run.

    Myself, I don’t buy recent releases used, but I HAVE bought used copies of PS1 games lately. Some of them have been re-released on the PSN store, some of them not, and some were so fundamentally changed as ports or remakes that you need to buy the original to get the experience again. Like how the original Star Wars trilogy in its original form is only available (last I checked) in VHS.

    #3 1 year ago
  4. DSB

    @2 The short answer is because they compete on sales against new products.

    For the industry it’s not viable. They’re just watching a retailer charging largely the same amount for the very same game, while they get 0 dollars and 0 cents on the transaction. It’s not like gamers are getting rich either.

    Gamestop dwarfs even the biggest games producers, so it’s not hard to see why some might feel a little jealous.

    #4 1 year ago
  5. rusty_shackleford

    LOL so the head guys at gamestop dont only screw the consumers and the publishers but ALSO their own company.

    cant wait for gamestop to die. i miss the old brick and mortar stores like funcoland for the ‘trading’ community but gamestop/eb killed that a long time ago. time for gamestop to die like all the small retail stores they killed. i havent shopped in a gamestop in 6 years++

    #5 1 year ago