In a recent case involving Super Bowl XLVIII, two men are facing charges for selling counterfeit tickets to this Sunday’s game, to be held at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
According to law enforcement officials, New York City resident Damon Daniels and Philadelphia resident Eugene Fladger were arrested on January 28, 2014, after allegedly selling fraudulent tickets for the 2014 Super Bowl. The alleged offenders have been accused of vending a myriad of counterfeit tickets for events held in a variety of states. Among these, police have identified tickets for the AFC divisional round playoff game in Foxborough, Massachusetts, the NFC Wild Card game in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as well as the NFL Commissioner’s Party at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel and the NFL Honors Party at Radio City Music Hall, both of which take place in New York City.
With respect to the Super Bowl specifically, the accused are suspected to have sold parking passes for Metlife Stadium, which is set to host this year’s game. Per reports, the tickets were valid in permitting an individual to enter the venue with their vehicle; however, those who purchased the actual tickets to the game would be entitled to the corresponding seats. Authorities have not disclosed the number of counterfeit tickets allegedly sold by those charged.
Under the New Jersey Criminal Code, the sale of counterfeit tickets is codified under N.J.S.A. 2C:21-32, also known as the New Jersey Trademark Counterfeiting Act. This statute classifies the sale of a counterfeit item with the intent to deceive or defraud some other person as an indictable criminal offense. Violations of this statute can be considered second, third, or fourth degree crimes, to be determined by the circumstances of the specific case.
In terms of the potential penalties for crimes governed under N.J.S.A. 2C:21-32, second degree offenses are punishable by a term of incarceration ranging from 5 to 10 years in New Jersey State Prison, third degree offenses are punishable by between 3 and 5 years of imprisonment, and fourth degree offenses warrant prison sentences of up to 18 months.
The National Football League has released a series of guidelines for individuals purchasing tickets to the Super Bowl to assist buyers in making legitimate purchases:
- Do not buy tickets from anyone selling tickets on the street or in front of the venue. Scalpers are typically unregulated and unlicensed, leaving you open to fraud, including stolen and counterfeit tickets.
- Always use a credit card or other secure form of payment. If ordering online, make sure the site offers a fully secure ordering process and utilizes state-of-the-art technology to protect your personal information, including your credit card number.
- Do verify the location of the seats on a seating chart to avoid being misled into purchasing obstructed view seats or seats that simply do not exist.
For more information pertaining to this case, access the following article: Super Bowl 2014: 2 charged with selling counterfeit Super Bowl tickets