Robert Erdman ripped off the federal Bureau of Prisons and other agencies to the tune of almost $1.5 million, and now he will get a close-up view of just how good the computer systems in the BOP are.
Erdman was sentenced today to 30 months in federal prison for selling counterfeit Cisco computer parts to federal agencies via a Chinese connection known only as "Tony," because the whole thing needed more of a Sopranos feel.
Judge Vanessa Gilmore said "Edman's conduct caused 'immeasurable harm to Cisco's brand name' and also harmed end users who thought they were obtaining genuine product," the U.S. Attorney's office said. "Edman pleaded guilty in September 2009 and will surrender to the Bureau of Prisons at a future date."
Federal authorities first noticed Erdman, 30, when they saw a bunch of empty Cisco boxes and labels being mailed to his Richmond home.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to the mission of the Houston Press. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Houston’s stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
"The shipment contained 1,800 empty Cisco boxes and Cisco label," prosecutors said. "In shipping counterfeit computer goods, it is a known practice to send the more valuable parts separately from the counterfeit packaging. That way, if the counterfeit packaging is discovered, as in this case, only that is seized and not the separately shipped, and more valuable, computer parts."
They questioned Erdman, who said he "routinely purchased Cisco products from an individual in China who goes by the name 'Tony,' they said, adding "Tony is a known trafficker in counterfeit Cisco parts."
Fuckin' A he is.
Erdman's victims included "the Marine Corps, Air Force, FBI, Federal Aviation Administration, Department of Energy, as well as defense contractors, universities, school districts and financial institutions," the feds said, but the charge he pleaded guilty to involved the Bureau of Prisons.