Romanian man sentenced in Internet auction scam

CHICAGO (AP) – A federal judge has sentenced a Romanian man to four years in prison in connection with a plan to hide money obtained through an international fraud scheme.

Federal prosecutors say 33-year-old Adrian Ghighina of Bucharest, Romania, was sentenced Wednesday after pleading guilty in February to wire fraud and conspiracy.

Court records show Ghighina was involved in a complex Internet fraud conspiracy that created fraudulent online auctions for expensive items. Those who responded were directed to send payments for non-existent items to accounts Ghighina controlled.

Victims never received their items.

Prosecutors say Ghighina admits moving from city to city opening new bank accounts in which to deposit his ill-gotten gains. He opened accounts in Illinois, Washington D.C., Florida, New York and Arizona.

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AP-WF-06-30-11 0804GMT