Who Is Queenpins Based On: How the Real Queenpins Counterfeit Scheme Worked?

Queenpins, the comedy about two buddies who run a large couponing scheme, is based on actual events. So, exactly Who Is Queenpins Based On?

Kristen Bell and Kirby Howell-Baptiste, who previously co-starred in Veronica Mars and The Good Place as Connie Kaminiski and JoJo Johnson, will once again share the screen in Queenpins.

Who Is Queenpins Based On?

The heist in Queenpins was inspired by the real-life coupon swindle pulled out by three Arizona women: Robin Ramirez, Marilyn Johnson, and Amiko “Amy” Fountain. The 40-year-old Ramirez was reportedly the group’s de facto leader when she was apprehended.

Johnson, who was 54 at the time, and Fountain, who was 42, helped her with the operation and ended up making millions of dollars. Sgt. David Lake of the Phoenix Police Department said to local TV station KPHO that the splendor and money were “the equivalent of drug cartel-type of stuff” after hearing about the American true-crime incident.

By the time the scam was through, the women were all living lavishly regardless of their financial situations prior to the initiative’s inception.

Queenpins is a more comic twist on the coupon fraud that was highlighted in the 2018 CBS documentary series Pink Collar Crimes. The true story of the Queenpins, however, is far from comical, as the ladies involved had to pay a steep price and endure harsh punishment for their swindling.

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How the Real Queenpins Counterfeit Scheme Worked?

The genuine Queenpins coupon counterfeiting ring operated as follows: customers would either buy coupons on marketplaces like eBay, or they would be invited or referred to the ring’s personal website, savvyshoppersite.com. Once there, shoppers may pick from a wide variety of valuable discounts.

The Phoenix radio station KTAR News reports that the group zeroed in on manufacturer coupons, which may be redeemed for free or discounted merchandise. In the words of a law enforcement official, these were not the typical “fifty-cents-off coupons” that would show up in the mail.

Who Is Queenpins Based OnSource: Filmschoolproject

The women offered a full refund if a retailer refused to accept one of their coupons. Perhaps if the women had made even worse agreements, they might never have been discovered.

Forty corporations, including industry giants like Proctor & Gamble, Hershey, and PepsiCo, reported fraud, bringing the scam crashing down. The FBI and local law enforcement collaborated to break up the ring after discovering its origins in Phoenix. Time magazine claims that in order to track down the perpetrators, investigators shopped for coupons surreptitiously.

Twelve separate bank accounts were used by the group to launder their money. The total in one account was almost $2 million. It took some time, but law enforcement was able to track Ramirez’s criminal behavior all the way back to 2007.

If The Queenpins Were So Hard To Catch, How Did They Finally Be Caught?

Forty businesses, including industry heavyweights like Procter & Gamble, Hershey, and PepsiCo, filed fraud accusations, putting a halt to the scheme. When the FBI learned that the group had its beginnings in Phoenix, it teamed up with local authorities to put an end to the operation.

What Were the Women’s Punishments?

In July 2012, authorities in Arizona apprehended Robin Ramirez, the ringleader, along with Marilyn Johnson and Amiko Fountain, two of her accomplices. They were charged with a wide array of crimes, including forging, counterfeiting, running a criminal enterprise, and money laundering. Below, you’ll see photographs of the actual women who run Queenpins.

Ramirez, the leader, admitted guilt on accusations of fraud, counterfeiting, and illegal management of a business. The accusation of forgery was dropped. A two-year prison sentence was followed by a probationary period of seven years. She got the only jail time out of the three.

The two men she worked with, Johnson and Fountain, each pled guilty to one count of counterfeiting. To make up for Procter & Gamble’s $1,288,682 in losses, the court ruled that all three women must pay restitution.

Unilever tried to get their money back from the ladies but they were unsuccessful. Some people thought the penalty wasn’t harsh enough and wouldn’t stop people from forging coupons in the future.

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