SBD/Issue 51/Sports Industrialists

Ornstein Sentenced To Eight Months In Prison For Ticket Scam

Marketing agent MIKE ORNSTEIN was "sentenced to eight months in prison Friday for selling scalped Super Bowl tickets and football jerseys fraudulently claimed to have been worn during pro games," according to Peter Krouse of the Cleveland PLAIN DEALER. Ornstein admitted that he "bought Super Bowl tickets at greater than face value from people who had gotten them through their employment." In court on Friday, he "started to explain some of the details of the ticket scheme, saying players were given forms for them to sign indicating tickets would go to charity," but was stopped by his attorney, ANGELO LONARDO. Ornstein also admitted "to a scheme whereby he and others -- from late 2000 to early 2001 -- purchased NFL jerseys from a Wisconsin manufacturer and had them cut into pieces and sold along with trading cards falsely marketed as having a piece of game-worn NFL jersey attached." Ornstein said during his sentencing that "none of the cards with jersey material attached were actually sold and that he never made any money on the jerseys." But he "agreed to forfeit $350,000 linked to proceeds from the schemes, all of which has been paid." Lonardo told the judge that his client "was having money problems when his crimes were committed." Ornstein has been "cooperating with federal agents for the past four years," and in return "was given a lighter sentence." Krouse noted Ornstein "seemed shaken by the sentence, slumping onto the lectern in front of him." His attorney had "asked if Ornstein could serve his sentence under home confinement," but U.S. District Judge Christopher Boyko said no (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 11/20).

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