Woman charged with eBay fraud

  By Abby Morris
  star staff
  amorris@starhq.com
  A Valley Forge woman was arrested Monday afternoon and charged with five counts of theft after she allegedly defrauded users of an Internet auction site.
  Gina Lee Ramirez, 38, 209 Nanny Goat Hill Rd., was arrested shortly after 5 p.m. on Monday by Carter County Sheriff's Department Sgt. Audrey Covington and charged with three counts of theft of property over $500 and two counts of theft of property under $500.
  According to police reports, the investigation into Ramirez began on July 30 when a female reported to the Sheriff's Department that she had filed on an online complaint form with the Internet auction site eBay. "She stated in the report that she had bid on children's clothing on eBay and paid (Ramirez) $330.70 for the item. However, (the victim) never received the item," Covington states in her report. "(The victim's) personal check was cashed by (Ramirez) on June 14, 2004 at Elizabethton Savings Bank."
  While speaking with investigators, the victim provided Covington the names of other possible victims who had been defrauded by Ramirez through the Internet. Each of the four additional victims reported that they had bid on-line for children's clothing and after being notified that they had won the auction, paid Ramirez for the clothing but never received it. The total amount of money which Ramirez collected from the five victims was nearly $3,300.
  "I then spoke with (Ramirez). She advised that she had reimbursed each victim," states Covington in her report. "However, I contacted PayPal, a form of online Internet payment, and they advised that they had reimbursed the victims and that the defendant was negative $5,063.46 (in her account)."
  Ramirez was arrested without incident and charged with three counts of theft over $500 and two counts of theft under $500. She is currently being held in the Carter County Jail on an $8,000 bond.
  She appeared in Carter County General Sessions Court on Tuesday and her case was continued until Sept. 3.