Lucas Henderson turned himself into federal court in Rochester, New York, Wednesday. He's charged with creating hundreds of thousands of dollars' worth of fake coupons for everything from Tide detergent to Sony's PlayStation. "As a result of Henderson's conduct, retailers and manufacturers paid out on the coupons and lost hundreds of thousands of dollars," the U.S. Department of Justice said Wednesday in a press release.
Charged with wire fraud and counterfeiting, the 22-year-old Henderson faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison.
Using the anonymous Tor browser to hide his tracks, Henderson posted coupons for PowerBars, Campbell's soup and Magic Hat Beer, using the online monikers Anonymous123, Anonymous234 and Anonymous345, U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent Andre Cicero wrote in a May 10 affidavit filed in connection with the case. The case was filed with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
But Henderson made a mistake in October, posting a couple of times from an IP address assigned to him at the Rochester Institute of Technology, Cicero said. Henderson is studying information security and forensics at the school, according to Cicero's affidavit.
Henderson's coupons allegedly mimicked legitimate coupons issued by SmartSource.com, a News Corp. subsidiary that has experienced a "rash of counterfeit online coupons," Cicero said.