Verizon Wireless employee sentenced to 2 years for stealing 900 phones

A Verizon Wireless employee was sentenced to more than two years in prison for stealing 900 cellphones and other devices and selling them online, making a profit of more than $270,000.

A federal judge in Newark sentenced 35-year-old James Hopkins, of Telford, Pa., to two years and three months in prison today.

The U.S. Attorney's Office for New Jersey said Hopkins, who worked as an account executive for a Verizon Wireless branch office in Trevose, Bucks County, placed orders for cellphones, accessories and other devices in the names of existing customers.

Hopkins had the merchandise shipped to a relative's home in New Jersey, manipulated the company's records to conceal the orders, and then sold the items on eBay.

In all, prosecutors said, he sold more than 900 items worth $328,517 online, making a profit of $272,290.

Hopkins had pleaded guilty to mail fraud charges. The incidents happened between February 2009 and November 2009, prosecutors said.

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