Andy Surface, the Alvin man who scammed the powerful Condé Nast publishing company of $8 million simply by sending a single bogus e-mail invoice, has formally renounced any claim to his ill-gotten gains.
Forbes, which first broke the story, reports Surface has filed court documents in New York relinquishing any rights to the money, which was deposited in a small Alvin branch bank.
It is still not known whether he will face any criminal charges.
After we noted the case earlier this month, we heard from a relative of Surface who, it's safe to say, wasn't really surprised.
The relative noted Surface had been seeking money from family members for quite some time (which further deepens the mystery of why he didn't take out the $8 million immediately after it was deposited) and that there had been some tension over other activities.
Surface, the relative said, spent inordinate amounts of time on a computer and was fanatical about not sharing the machine or letting anyone see what he was doing.
"I just assumed it was porn," the relative said.
It was an argument with a family member over the computer that triggered the terroristic-threat charges he pleaded guilty to last year.
What's still most surprising is that Surface's Condé Nast scam worked at all. The company, which puts out such magazines as The New Yorker and Vanity Fair, uses a printer called Quad/Graphics. Surface sent an e-mail invoice from a company he created called Quad Graph.
And Conde Nast sent $8 million to Alvin.
To their credit, someone eventually figured things out. Eventually.
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