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Coupon Counterfeiter Sentenced to Prison, Financial Penalties

New Orleans, LA, January 14, 2016 --( Convicted coupon counterfeiter Beau Wattigney a/k/a “Purple Lotus” has been sentenced to 41 months imprisonment; 3 years of supervised release, ordered to pay $74,855 in restitution and two special assessments of $100 each. Wattigney was immediately remanded and taken into custody by US Marshals.

Wattigney sold counterfeit coupons through a number of darknet markets, including but not limited to Silk Road, Silk Road 2.0, Agora and Evolution. Wattigney also created a so-called “private” forum where his co-conspirators exchanged ideas on which retailers and cashiers to target; “social engineering,” more accurately known as lying, to improve the lies they told cashiers; and other techniques to advance their criminal activities.

Coupon Information Corporation (CIC) Executive Director Bud Miller, CPP notes, “Consumers can protect themselves from counterfeiters by never paying money for coupons and using only coupons they have obtained from authorized channels, such as their local newspaper.”

Coupons are a great way for honest consumers to enjoy substantial discounts and enhance their shopping opportunities. The industry continues to research and deploy technologies to enhance the integrity of coupons.

The CIC congratulates the Federal Bureau of Investigation Philadelphia and New Orleans Divisions, Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section of the Department of Justice, Criminal Division, and the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Louisiana for their efforts in the case against coupon counterfeiter Beau Wattigney.

The Coupon Information Corporation (CIC) is a not-for-profit association of consumer product manufacturers dedicated to fighting coupon misredemption and fraud. CIC was founded to encourage integrity in connection with the redemption of manufacturers' coupons and participation in other promotional programs.
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