Purchase photos

Mexican citizen sentenced in Home Depot scam

6/20/2012

WICHITA (AP) -- An illegal immigrant arrested in Ellis County has been sentenced in Kansas to two years in federal prison for taking part in a scam that victimized Home Depot stores across the country.

The U.S. Attorney's office says 40-year-old Manuel Gonzalez Gonzalez faces deportation to Mexico when he finishes the sentence he received Tuesday, although he's also charged with a similar crime in California.

Prosecutors said the scam involved stealing merchandise from Home Depot stores, then returning the goods with counterfeit or discarded receipts and receiving in-store credit cards for the merchandise.

Gonzalez was arrested on Interstate 70 in Ellis County last December. A Highway Patrol trooper reported finding hundreds of the Home Depot cards, worth a total of about $69,000.