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MARTA fraudsters sentenced in massive stolen rides scheme


Five people pleaded guilty to racketeering in the massive so-called "Underground Railroad" MARTA fraud scam.

Each is set to serve jail time. They were ordered to pay a total of $570,000 in restitution, according to a Tuesday statement from the DeKalb County District Attorney's Office.

The elaborate scheme happened in 2013, when MARTA computers were hacked. Authorities believe $1 Breeze fare cards were purchased and fraudulently loaded with much higher values. 

The defendants then sold the cards at a discount to riders, pocketing the difference, authorities have said. Distributors were posted at the H.E. Holmes, Five Points, Chamblee and Doraville stations.

RELATED: Dunwoody cops release video of home invaders who pistol-whipped mom

RELATED: DeKalb man hid dad’s death to get Social Security check — for 34 years

 

RELATED: Victim's mom thankful for East Atlanta Village murder suspect's arrest

The alleged founder of the scheme, Melvin Summers, is in federal custody on unrelated charges and has not been tried, the DA's office said. He is the only person indicted with the group who has not agreed to a plea deal.

The defendants whose guilty pleas were announced Tuesday are:

  • Pierre Metteaux, who did most of the computer work to put false values on the Breeze cards. Under the plea negotiations, he'll be sentenced Wednesday to 20 years to serve 40 months in custody, which will be reduced for the nearly three years he's been incarcerated already. The remainder of the time will be on probation.
  • Jedadia Byrd, who helped with distributing the cards to the street. He was sentenced to 20 years to serve three years in prison.
  • Stephanie Byrd, whose role wasn't explained in a news release. She was sentenced to 20 years to serve two years in prison.
  • Christina Carney, who recruited Metteaux to do the computer work. She was sentenced to 20 years to serve four years in prison.
  • Robert Lee Clark, a distributor. He was sentenced to 20 years to serve 18 months in prison.

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