MANHATTAN (CN) – A husband and wife defrauded people of more than $1 million through a work-at-home scheme that promised suckers they could get $1 for each postcard they mailed – and the husband ran the scam while on supervised release from prison after a 3-year sentence for doing the same thing, federal prosecutors said.
Philip Pestrichello and Rosalie Florie were arrested Wednesday and charged with mail fraud. The U.S. Attorney’s Office says Pestrichello has been running these scams since 1992 and has been sued for it, and enjoined from doing it again, by Florida, New Jersey and the FTC. He was convicted of mail fraud in 2003 and sentenced to 3 years in federal prison and began his latest scheme while on supervised release, prosecutors said.
He called this one the “Preferred Platinum Services Network,” and other names, and advertised through the mail, the Internet and in Classified ads that people could “Earn $1.00 Per Postcard.”
And he added, charmingly, “Rest assured, this is NOT a gimmick or some shady ‘get rich quick scheme.’ Our company has a rock-solid reputation.”
He charged suckers $80or $90 to “enroll,” and more money for the postcards from which they were supposed to earn money, prosecutors said.
“By the time they realized they were not receiving any paychecks at all from PPSN, many consumers had already sent PPSN between $150 and $350.”
If convicted, Pestrichello and his wife face up to 20 years in the cooler.
Both are 38 years old. They live in Bayville, N.J.