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The great Coca-Cola bottle-cap scam

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#1 Hum

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Posted 24 February 2013 - 13:50

ALBANY, OR – An Oregon mother and daughter who devised an elaborate scheme to scam Coca-Cola in a bottle cap promotion have been sentenced to probation and must pay back almost $50,000 to the corporation.

Carrie Jones, 55, and Sarah Jones, 31, were arrested after corporate investigators in 2011 tracked an unusually high number of winnings to a computer IP address in Albany.

During the promotion, which ran from May to August 2011, customers could text a code found underneath the cap of their Coca-Cola product to see if their code was a winner. Winners then emailed their winning code to Coca-Cola to receive a prize code, redeemable for things like concert tickets.

Prosecutor Coleen Cerda said the odds were against the city of Albany -- let alone one family -- getting so many prizes. Contest rules also specified that a person could win only twice and a household only five times during the four-month promotion.

To avoid the limit, it was alleged that the Joneses' manufactured email addresses using other people's identities. The prize codes were then grouped together and sold online on eBay.

The Joneses, the prosecutor added, never divulged where they got the winning prize codes.

Sarah Jones pleaded guilty Friday to computer crime and identity theft. Carrie Jones pleaded guilty to computer crime.

"It's a heck of a lot of restitution you're agreeing to," Judge Thomas McHill said.

But police Det. Mike Wood told the Albany Democrat-Herald (http://is.gd/Jinj6R) that he thinks the Joneses bilked Coke out of "six figures" worth of prizes.

Neither woman made a statement in court.

"She realizes what she did was wrong," said defense attorney David Denhartigh, speaking for Sarah Jones. "I think she's a good person, and she made a big mistake."

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#2 cork1958

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Posted 24 February 2013 - 13:56

Sentenced to probation is all? The fine should be given, but they still get to use a computer?

Pretty ingenious, how ever they actually did it!!

#3 OP Hum

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Posted 24 February 2013 - 16:26

^ I suspect they had some inside relative working at Coca-cola.

#4 I am Reid

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Posted 25 February 2013 - 07:24

Sentenced to probation is all? The fine should be given, but they still get to use a computer?

Pretty ingenious, how ever they actually did it!!


well they couldn't really prove it all. They don't know how she got the numbers, basically shes just guilty of making a bunch of fake email address to get around a customer limit.

#5 Original Poster

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Posted 25 February 2013 - 19:23

they probs just got loads out of recycling.... who actually texts in the codes? i never can be bothered I buy it to drink it not waste my time

#6 Growled

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 01:05

"She realizes what she did was wrong," said defense attorney David Denhartigh, speaking for Sarah Jones. "I think she's a good person, and she made a big mistake."


That is the biggest bunch of BS I've ever heard.

#7 Detection

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 01:14

Years and years ago, me and my mate went to one of those all night garages, the cans of coke were in the fridges at the back and they had one of those under the ring-pull promotions on too

We had worked out you can see if it was a winner or not without completely popping the ring-pull and opening the can, it was something like red for win, black for lose and the prise was a free can of coke or something equally pointless

Anyway, we were at the back of the shop for about 10 minutes looking under all the ring-pulls and eventually bought about 10 cans of winning coke cans

Left the garage feeling dead pleased with ourselves, opened a couple of cans to drink, then read the competition rules on the side

The competition had already ended 2-3 months before :laugh: