Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that VITALY BORKER, the operator of “EyeglassesDepot.com” and other online retailers of purported designer eyewear, pled guilty today to one count of wire fraud in connection with a scheme to defraud customers of his websites. BORKER pled guilty before United States District Judge Jed S. Rakoff.
U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “Once again, Vitaly Borker has pled guilty to crimes relating to his fraudulent operation of eyewear websites. Borker’s plea today demonstrates this Office’s intolerance for recidivism, and we can only hope that the third time is the charm and that Borker finally learns his lesson.”
According to the previously filed Complaint and Indictment in this case and statements made in court:
Beginning in at least June 2020, after being released from federal custody and entering a Residential Reentry Center, VITALY BORKER operated an eyewear sales and repair services website called EyeglassesDepot.com. EyeglassesDepot.com claimed, among other things, that it sold “brand new and 100% authentic designer eyeglasses and sunglasses” and that it had “thousands of pairs of glasses in stock…ready for shipping as early as TODAY.” In truth, however, the eyewear sold to customers of EyeglassesDepot.com was often used or counterfeit. Rather than carrying a large inventory of “brand new and 100% authentic eyewear,” EyeglassesDepot.com filled its customers’ orders by purchasing comparable items on a third-party online marketplace (the “Marketplace”). The eyewear purchased by EyeglassesDepot.com from the Marketplace was often used or counterfeit, but EyeglassesDepot.com passed off the glasses as new and authentic. In addition, while EyeglassesDepot.com claimed to be a “leader in the repair of sunglasses and eyeglasses” and able to “fit any eyeglasses or sunglasses with your custom prescriptions,” customers who sent eyewear to EyeglassesDepot.com either did not have their eyewear repaired at all or otherwise received unsatisfactory work.
In order to conceal his role in operating EyeglassesDepot.com, BORKER – who has twice previously been convicted in this District of crimes relating to his operation of eyewear websites – used the identities of other individuals in connection with the operation of EyeglassesDepot.com.
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BORKER, 46, of Brooklyn, New York, pled guilty to one count of wire fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
The maximum potential sentence in this case is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge. BORKER is scheduled to be sentenced at 10:00 a.m. on April 21, 2023, by U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff.
Mr. Williams praised the outstanding investigative work of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.
This case is being handled by the Office’s General Crimes Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Matthew Weinberg, William Kinder, Jeffrey Coyle, and Sarah Mortazavi are in charge of the prosecution.