Condé Nast Gets $8 Million Back from Scammer
NEW YORK—The enterprising man who managed to lure Condé Nast into depositing nearly $8 million into his bank account under the guise that he represented printer Quad/Graphics, has relinquished his claim to the money, Forbes reported.
Andy Surface of Alvin, TX, waived claim to the money and agreed not to dispute the seizure, but the waiver he signed in Manhattan federal court also stated that it not "be deemed an admission of culpability, liability or guilt." It was not immediately known whether criminal charges will be levied against Surface for the theft and posing as a representative for Sussex, WI-based Quad/Graphics.
Wired.com, citing court documents, reported that the publisher's accounts payable department received an e-mail apparently from the printer, asking that payments be sent to a specific bank account, and even included an electronic payments authorization form. According to the e-mail, the account was for "Quad Graph," a close match to the actual printer's name. The account was allegedly opened by Surface.
A Condé Nast representative signed and returned the form via a fax number listed in the e-mail, and began making electronic transfer payments. A total of about $8 million was wired to the "Quad Graph" account between Nov. 17 and Dec. 30. The scam was discovered when Quad/Graphics reached out to the publisher regarding outstanding bills.