Suspect Seeks Revenge through Magazine Subscriptions - WBAY

Target 2 Consumer Alert

Suspect Seeks Revenge through Magazine Subscriptions


A Milwaukee area woman became the target in a mail harassment case, and it all started with magazine subscriptions she never ordered.

"You don't know why it's happening or who did it to you," said the victim, who did not want to be identified. "Did we make someone mad--irate that they are trying to get back at us?"

The victim did not want to show her face because she was victimized by someone seeking retribution for a perceived injustice.

"He decided he would bombard them with tons of subscriptions and mail order items causing them to receive billing notices and collection notices, things that would negatively affect their credit," said Derik Thieme, U.S. Postal Inspector.

Authorities say the suspect filled out dozens of magazine subscription forms and check the 'bill me later' box.

"In a given day, five or six at least, and this was every day," said the victim. "I mean, we had stacks of magazines. We worried about our credit rating first."

"What happens is they received these products, they didn't order them, but the companies want to hold them responsible for paying for them," said Thieme. "Once it's referred to a collector, that is something that can be reported to a credit agency and bureau and that can cause a negative impact on their credit report."

The victim spent days on the phone contacting the companies sending the magazines and merchandise to tell them there was a mistake.
Postal inspectors learned this victim and 12 others were targeted by a suspect already known to law enforcement.

"So when somebody does something to violate laws that they had previously been warned to stop, it doesn't sit well," said Thieme.

The suspect was charged with mail fraud and got 8 months in prison with probation.
The victim says she learned a lesson: that she should have called officials right away to report the crime.

"I just hope it never happens again."

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