Local News

N.Y. man pleads guilty to using counterfeit credit cards at N.C. stores

Posted June 9, 2009

— A New York man pleaded guilty Tuesday to charges that he used counterfeit credit cards at dozens of businesses throughout North Carolina.

Erskine Alfonza Spruill, 46, of Roosevelt, N.Y., also agreed to pay $134,976.85 in restitution to businesses that lost money. He admitted guilt to charges of using counterfeit devices, possession of counterfeit device-making equipment and aggravated identity theft.

"The use of counterfeit credit cards and identity theft continues to be one of the greatest financial threats we face," U.S. Attorney George Holding said. "And it affects us in such personal ways, being thrown into turmoil by this crime."

A Feb. 19 indictment from a federal grand jury charges that between Jan. 24 and 26, Spruill used credit cards at businesses including:

  • Best Buy, Sam Ash and the Guitar Center on Capital Boulevard in Raleigh
  • Macy's on Glenwood Avenue in Raleigh
  • the Travelers Inn on Road Street in Elizabeth City
  • Ruby Tuesday, Circuit City and CVS pharmacy in Raleigh.

The indictment alleges that he used identification belonging to someone else at the Guitar Center.

"We look forward to the sentencing in this case as we try to send a message to those who would commit these crimes," Holding said.

Spruill faces up to 10 years of imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 on the charge of using a counterfeit device and up to 15 years of imprisonment and a fine up to $250,000 on the charge of possession of counterfeit device-making equipment. The charge of aggravated identity theft carries a mandatory two-year prison sentence, consecutive to any other term.


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  • whatusay Jun 10, 2009

    Anyone ever use a credit card to buy gasoline??? I don't think a signature is required, whether it's you or a thief getting the gas. I let my daughter use my CC occassionally. A signature is not required for a credit card purchase.

  • jones27530 Jun 9, 2009

    All the signature on the back of a card is there for is so the cashier (in theory) can compare that signature on the back of the card to the signature on the receipt that you sign in an attempt to verify that it is actually you signing. But we all know they never do this.


  • jones27530 Jun 9, 2009

    "If the card is not signed, it is not valid."

    If that was the case don't you know some people would charge it to the max then claim they don't have to pay because they didn't sign the card.

  • jones27530 Jun 9, 2009

    "If the card is not signed, it is not valid."

    Yeah right. Try telling that one to the CC company when they call inquiring why you havent paid the bill.

  • james27613 Jun 9, 2009

    He don't like the food at the jail, he prefers Ruby Tuesday.

    Awww, he looks like he wants to cry- Good!

  • james27613 Jun 9, 2009

    As far as cashiers asking for 'ID', it is a joke.

    If I'm going to use a stolen/copied Amex or Visa card,
    don't you know that I'll also have a official looking NC Driver License also ?

    Problem is, most stores don't check the signature on the cards, or the cards are not signed. If the card is not signed, it is not valid.

    I got 'id'd' twice at Regal movies at Brier Creek, once at the ticket window and again at the popcorn line. Give me a break!

    These people would not know a fake ID from a genuine one.

    You can print them on your pc, just leave it in your wallet
    an bingo, your B. Obama, M. Easely, Bob Dole, etc.

  • MarcoPolo Jun 9, 2009

    Can anybody honestly tell me what is the difference in what this guy did and what BO did implementing the new credit card/banking regulations? There's really no difference. People who knowingly borrowed more than they could spend will be "bailed" out by the responsible people through new fees and charges.

    I think too this guy should go to prison if he's not going to pay back nothing. He'll probably get off and that'll be the end of it. Taxpayers will pay. If he is on gov't subsidy, it'll continue. Taxpayers will pay double for this dude.

    BO's debt is about $1.4 Trillion (and counting)worse than this guy's debt though and BO STILL WANTS TO SPEND MORE MONEY THAT THE AMERIKA DOESN'T HAVE.

  • Nancy Jun 9, 2009

    "For the people get angry at cashiers when they ask for your ID when paying with a credit card.... THIS is why they do it."

    I actually verbally thank anyone who asks for ID...and ask those who don't why they don't.

  • thecatsmeow Jun 9, 2009

    I agree with you clpmm18. I'm happy they ask for my ID. I don't take it as a personal thing because I know they're doing their job, thus protecting my identity as well.

  • Just the facts mam Jun 9, 2009

    Same People Different Day