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NY woman sentenced to 4 years in gift card fraud

Wednesday - 1/29/2014, 2:27am  ET

BALTIMORE (AP) -- A New York woman has been sentenced to more than four years in prison for defrauding a home improvement company through fraudulent gift cards.

Thirty-five-year-old Lucerte "Lisa" Abellard of Dobbs Ferry, N.Y., was also ordered to pay more than $410,000 in restitution at sentencing Tuesday in federal court in Baltimore.

According to her plea agreement, Abellard called employees at Lowe's stores around the country pretending to be from the IT department. Prosecutors say Abellard would claim there were problems with a register, ask an employee to run diagnostics and do a test transaction.

Officials say the test transaction would require putting a credit of about $3,500 on Lowe's gift cards which Abellard held.

Prosecutors say Lowe's was defrauded of more than $464,000.

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