A Maryland man pleaded guilty Thursday to selling more than $8,000 worth of counterfeit tickets to the 2012 Allstate BCS National Championship game and Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans.
Richard McNeal, 47, of Randallstown, Md., admitted to a charge of trafficking in counterfeit goods, U.S. Attorney Dana J. Boente announced.
McNeal traveled to the city on Jan. 8, 2012, to sell the fake tickets. Since he could find no hotel rooms in New Orleans, he went to Picayune, Miss., where he found a room and sold four tickets for $3,000, Boente said in a news release.
The people who bought the tickets were denied entry into the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
They returned to Mississippi and reported the phony tickets to police there.
McNeal returned to the city Feb. 2 to sell more counterfeit tickets, this time to the Super Bowl. But during that time, the NFL and federal authorities were searching for bogus tickets, and someone to whom McNeal sold tickets went to those officials to see if they were real.
That person found out her $1,650 worth of tickets were fake.
The next day, undercover Homeland Security agents arranged to meet McNeal at a coffee shop to try to buy tickets.
McNeal offered to sell the undercover agents two tickets for $2,600. New Orleans police officers who worked with the federal agents then arrested him.
Later that day, another person came forward with two tickets he bought from McNeal for $1,000 that turned out to be fake.
McNeal is scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 19.
Jefferson Parish sheriff’s deputies arrested a Metairie man for false swearing after he allegedly made up a story about how he was robbed of his car.
William Montero, 33, called the Sheriff’s Office about 11:10 p.m. Monday to report that he was robbed at gunpoint in the 8600 block of River Road in Waggaman, according to a Sheriff’s Office news release.
Montero told deputies he was parked at the railroad tracks when a vehicle pulled up and two men got out.
The men walked up to his car, opened his door, pulled out a gun and ordered him to open the passenger door.
Then, he said, they made him take off his shoes and socks and stole his 2012 Chevrolet Impala. Montero said he wandered around the neighborhood before making his way to a friend’s house.
Investigators were suspicious about the story since Montero could not explain the reason for stopping at the tracks while no train passed, among other things.
Montero later admitted he was in the Kennedy Heights neighborhood to buy drugs when dealers stole his car. Montero told investigators he threw away his shoes to make his story more believable and changed the location of the robbery so deputies would not think he was buying drugs.
A background check found Montero, who has five convictions, has been arrested for narcotics violations, including several for possession of heroin, arrests for burglary, aggravated battery and possession of stolen things.
Montero’s most recent arrest was last March in Jefferson Parish for possession of heroin, according to the news release. He was also wanted for two Kenner attachments and one in second parish court.
A popular Riverbend bar was robbed at gunpoint early Thursday, police said.
Two masked men who also wore gloves and hoodies walked into Cooter Brown’s, 509 S. Carrollton Ave., about 4:30 a.m. and forced one employee into a back room where another employee was working, New Orleans police said.
The robbers then ran out of the bar with a “large sum” of cash from the safe, according to a daily police log. A third employee saw the gunmen and called police from a Shell gasoline station across the street.
No one was injured. Police have not announced any arrests in the robbery.
Police called out to investigate a suspicious package on a Faubourg Marigny corner Wednesday night found the item to be more useful than dangerous.
Someone called police about 8:20 p.m. and told them a package with wires coming from it was near a tree at Marigny and North Rampart streets.
Police who arrived to investigate the object found it was nothing more than a mosquito-control device.
A man and a woman were killed late Wednesday when their car slammed into a pole and rolled onto its roof.
The accident happened about 8:30 p.m. in the 4500 block of Almonaster Avenue in the Desire area.
A witness told police that a silver Ford Mustang was speeding lakebound on Almonaster and moments later slammed into a utility pole and flipped over.
The driver, a 64-year-old man, was thrown from the car, while the woman, whose age was not immediately available, remained strapped into the passenger seat, said officer Frank Robertson, an NOPD spokesman.
Paramedics pronounced the man and woman dead on the scene. Their identities were not immediately available.
Police are trying to determine if speed was a factor,. Toxicology tests are pending.
Fatality investigator Melvin Hunter is leading the investigation.
A 34-year-old man was arrested late Wednesday after he allegedly robbed a woman at knifepoint.
Brian Washington was booked on charges of armed robbery and simple battery after police said he went into a home in the 5300 block of Wilton Drive in Gentilly about 10 p.m.
Washington grabbed a knife after a brief struggle with the 34-year-old victim as he tried to take her purse, according to a daily police log.
Washington ran away from the victim’s home, but was arrested a short time later.
He remained jailed Thursday, according to Orleans Parish sheriff’s records.
the New Orleans bureau
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