A New Jersey man who tried and failed to impersonate being a former New England Patriots player to purchase family versions of the team’s 2016 Super Bowl rings – one of which sold at auction for more than $337,000 – has been charged with several counts of fraud, federal prosecutors announced Monday.
24-year-old Scott Spina purchased three Superbowl LI rings made for players’ friends and family and had them engraved with the name “Brady,” so he could falsely claim that the rings were given to Tom Brady’s nephews, officials said.
According to the Department of Justice:
“When Spina obtained the player ring, he also received the information that allowed the former player to purchase Super Bowl rings for family and friends that are slightly smaller than the player rings. “Spina then called the Ring Company, fraudulently identified himself as [the former player], and started ordering three family and friend Super Bowl LI rings with the name ‘Brady’ engraved on each one, which he falsely represented were gifts for the baby of quarterback Tom Brady,” according to the criminal information filed today. “The rings were at no time authorized by Tom Brady. Defendant Spina intended to obtain the three rings by fraud and to sell them at a substantial profit.”
Spina entered into an agreement with the Orange County man who purchased the player’s Super Bowl ring to sell him the three family rings that Spina now claimed Brady had given to his nephews. After agreeing to buy the three rings for $81,500 – nearly three times what Spina paid for the rings – the buyer started to believe that Brady did not have nephews, and he tried to withdraw from the deal. The same day that the buyer tried to back out, and the same day that Spina actually received the rings in November 2017, Spina immediately sold them to an auction house for $100,000. During an auction in February 2018, one of the family rings was sold for $337,219.
“By pretending to be a New England Patriots player, the defendant was able to get Super Bowl rings from the company that issued them. But in offering the rings for sale, he was also selling their connection to Tom Brady — a story that simply did not hold up on close scrutiny,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Erik M. Silber.
Because of his actions, Spina has now been charged with one count of mail fraud, three counts of wire fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft. This past Monday, he agreed to plead guilty to the five felony offenses and pay restitution to the former Patriots player, identified only as T.J., as part of a plea agreement.
This isn’t his first issue with obeying the law as Spina was sentenced to 35 months in prison and ordered to pay restitution of $516,396.33 for selling sneakers and other high-end items to customers and failing to deliver back in 2018.
If this guy somehow doesn’t do a lifetime in prison over this, he will most certainly get out and think of another scheme to screw people over.