Bradenton, FL - A Florida realtor has been arrested for allegedly defrauding renowned designer brand Lululemon out of nearly $200,000 worth of athletic apparel in a complex scheme involving online orders, fake identities, and double credit returns.
The investigation, described as "complex" and spanning multiple states, commenced in mid-April after an employee from Lululemon's Organized Retail Crime Investigation group came forward with the name of a suspect.
Investigators say that 55-year-old Mark Tilley, a Bradenton realtor, had been placing online orders on lululemon.com, utilizing multiple credit cards and often assuming the identities of others, while having the shipments delivered to various addresses within his Magnolia Estates apartment complex.
To evade Lululemon's fraud detection system, Tilley consistently used the same phone number for most of his orders.
However, investigators discovered that the purchases were traced back to an IP address linked to Tilley's Gmail account.
Once the packages were in transit, Tilley would modify the delivery address to his community leasing office, where he would collect them.
Tilley would then initiate a fast-track return process upon receiving the packages, sending back empty boxes to Lululemon.
By scanning the return box at a local USPS self-serve kiosk, he would receive an E-gift card credit.
Tilley would then return the actual clothing items to various brick-and-mortar stores across multiple states, effectively obtaining double the credit.
Lululemon estimated their losses to be around $125,000 between October of 2022 and April of 2023.
However, Sarasota County detectives discovered that Tilley's fraudulent activities had caused the company to suffer a staggering $200,000 in damages.
Tilley was arrested on a charge of grand theft over $100,000.