In his guilty plea, Richard Earl Norton Jr., 48, admitted stealing designer purses, wallets, satchels and other items from the Macy’s store in Fresno where he worked from October 2005 to September 2009. Norton admitted that he sold many of these stolen goods to buyers in other states through Internet sales using his eBay account and other Internet sales sites. Norton directed buyers to make payments for these online sales to his PayPal account, and after receiving the buyers’ payments, shipped the stolen goods and merchandise to buyers in other states. He admitted that he knew the goods he was shipping interstate were stolen, that he had himself stolen the items, and that he obtained more than $900,000 from this scheme.
Norton agreed to forfeit to the United States roughly $2 million in assets, his home in Fresno, and vehicles consisting of two 2005 BMW Z4 cars, a 2002 Ford truck, a 2005 Chrysler Crossfire and a 2007 Pontiac Solstice.
This case is the product of a joint investigation by the FBI Cyber Crimes Task Force, the Fresno Police Department, and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of Inspector General.
Norton is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 17. The maximum statutory penalty for interstate transportation of stolen property is 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and up to three years’ supervised release. The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory sentencing factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.