The Channel logo

News

By | John Oates 6th December 2004 10:35

Aussie jailed for flogging bogus Canon servers

Rebadging scam

An Australian man has been jailed for ripping off millions of dollars by selling counterfeit computer equipment. John Michael Parker, as a director of a reseller called Matrix, had an exclusive distribution deal for Canon equipment in Toowoomba, Queensland.

In 1992 the firm was contacted by McCafferty's, a bus company, which wanted to upgrade its ticketing system. Parker sold it two "super file servers" and associated equipment for AU$523,000 ($406,000), claiming it was all the latest Canon technology. In fact the boxes had been made by Matrix engineers and then had Canon badges attached.

The system worked but needed frequent maintenance and crashed frequently. Matrix continued to supply McCafferty's with IT kit and over five years and charged the company AU$2.5m ($1.94m).

In 1997 the fraud came to light when McCafferty's tendered a contract to upgrade IT systems. It emerged that Canon Australia was unaware of the agreement.

Parker was sentenced to three-and-a-half years, to be suspended after nine months, for four years. McCafferty's has already taken civil action and successfully sued Matrix for AU$3.9m ($3m). It is unlikely to retrieve any money as Matrix has gone bust.

The Toowoomba Chronicle has more. ®

Related stories

How scammers run rings round eBay
Fraud warning for UK resellers
Paradise Computers goes titsup

alert Send corrections

Opinion

Woman cuddles 'sly-looking' Fennec fox. Photo by Shutterstock
Cartoon of employee asking wky boss makes hium wear suspenders (while pincer through open trapdoor remains poised above his head) illustration by Cartoon resource for Shutterstock

Frank Jennings

It's not like my boss painstakingly nurtured the contacts, right?

Features

Girl and computer, photo via Shutterstock
Middle-class terror of engineering also part of problem
Nerd fail photo via Shutterstock
Shouting match
Single market vs. rest of the world