John W. Vaudreuil, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, has announced that Fallon Witherspoon, 27, Chicago, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge William M. Conley to two years of probation for participating in a counterfeit gift card fraud scheme.  Witherspoon pleaded guilty to this charge Nov. 4, 2016.

Witherspoon and his co-conspirator, Julian Harris, 34, also of Chicago, obtained prepaid gift cards encoded with stolen credit card or bank account information.  

From October to December 2013, Witherspoon and Harris traveled from Chicago to Wisconsin and used the counterfeit gift cards to purchase legitimate gift cards and merchandise from Wal-Mart stores in Monroe, La Crosse, Chippewa, Dunn, and St. Croix counties.

Witherspoon and Harris also traveled to Minnesota and conducted fraudulent transactions there.  They were not charged with these crimes in Minnesota. However, as part of their guilty pleas, they agreed to pay restitution for all losses relating to the fraud scheme.  

As part of his sentence, Witherspoon was ordered to pay $41,919 in restitution.  

Harris pleaded guilty Nov. 1, 2016, and is to be sentenced by Judge Conley Feb. 3.

The charges against Witherspoon and Harris were the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation; U.S. Secret Service; Lake Hallie, Tomah, Menomonie, Sparta, Onalaska, La Crosse, and St. Croix Falls police departments; and with the assistance of Wal-Mart Asset Protection.

The prosecution of this case is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Julie Pfluger.