Texas man impersonating late Mississippian online goes to prison

(The following is a press release from the Mississippi Attorney General's office.)

Jackson, MS—A Texas man is going to prison for pulling off an internet scam using the identity of a deceased Mississippian, announced Attorney General Jim Hood today.

John Wiggins, 52, of Round Rock, Texas pleaded guilty today in Lafayette County Circuit Court before Judge John Gregory to two counts of Fraudulent Use of Identity involving a Craigslist scam.  Judge Gregory sentenced Wiggins to the maximum penalty of five years behind bars on each count with the sentences to run concurrent meaning Wiggins will spend five years behind bars for the crime.  He was also ordered to pay full restitution of $3,500 to the victims of the scam, one a resident of Colorado and the other a resident of Oklahoma.

The case was referred to the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division by the Lafayette County Sheriff's Office.  The Attorney General's investigation revealed that the defendant was behind a Craigslist scam regarding the sale of a 2003 Ford F350 truck using the identity of a deceased Lafayette County resident as the seller of the truck.  Wiggins was able to obtain money from the victims who were trying to purchase the truck, which was actually nonexistent.

“Our office is committed to making the internet a safer place for all of us to work and play,” said Attorney General Hood.  “I appreciate Judge Gregory for handing down the maximum sentence for this crime.”

The case was prosecuted by Special Assistant Attorney General Shaun Yurtkuran of the  Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division.