from the why didn't i think of that category...
Man allegedly impersonated Jeter, Nomar
SAN JOSE, Calif. -- A con man impersonated baseball stars Derek Jeter and Nomar Garciaparra in e-mails to get bats with their names, and then sold them for thousands of dollars to unsuspecting collectors on eBay, federal prosecutors alleged Tuesday.
Herbert John Derungs of San Francisco was indicted on six counts of mail and wire fraud and one count of sending threatening e-mails, charges that collectively carry up to 32 years in prison. He was being held without bail pending a court hearing Wednesday.
Derungs claimed to be Jeter and Garciaparra in e-mails to the Original Maple Bat Co. of Ottawa, according to a detailed affidavit filed by a postal inspector.
"I am interested in your product, due to the fact that Jose Canseco let me use it last year, and I liked it, although it was too heavy," read one e-mail in 2000 from "email@example.com," according to the affidavit.
"I will place an order for 50-60 for the 2001 season, because my contract with Louisville Slugger is up, and I am trying to get a feel of what's out there before I decide what bats to use next year. The sooner the better. Thanks Derek."
After those e-mails -- and follow-up phone calls purportedly from representatives of the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox shortstops -- Original Maple sent 60 bats worth $3,319 to addresses in Lakewood, Wash., and Brisbane, Calif., the inspector said. The company never got any money for the bats, prosecutors allege.
Using multiple screen names, Derungs offered the bats on eBay and claimed they had been used in games by the players, prosecutors said. One victim allegedly traded $6,000, a Mark McGwire bat and a Rogers Hornsby bat for 15 of the Jeter and Garciaparra bats.
Derungs also allegedly sent threatening e-mails to a San Francisco Giants employee who turned down his application to be a tour guide at Pacific Bell Park because the position already was filled.
A phone call to Derungs' home for comment Tuesday afternoon was not returned.