Mayo Gilbert McNeil charged in fake sports card scheme

Left: Michael Jordan arrives at the 11th Annual Michael Jordan Celebrity Invitational held on March 30, 2012 at the Aria Resort Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada (File Photo by: zz/Raoul Gatchalian/STAR MAX/IPx 2012 3/30/12). Right: a counterfeit Michael Jordan trading card (via FBI court filing).

An elderly Colorado man is facing federal wire fraud charges for his alleged role in a scheme that involved counterfeit Michael Jordan trading cards and bilked collectors out of more than $800,000.

Mayo Gilbert McNeil, 82, was arrested Wednesday in Denver, the Justice Department announced in a press release. He’s accused of being part of a conspiracy to pass fraudulent sports cards off as real by imitating the grading system and shipping methods of an established sports memorabilia company.

According to the probable cause affidavit, McNeil targeted at least two sports card collectors: one in New York, identified only as “Victim-1,” and one in Michigan, identified as “Victim-2.” The affidavit also details the involvement of “Company-1,” described as a “third-party authentication and grading service for collectibles,” including sports cards.

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