Fake TV salesman sent to prison, ordered to repay $759,000 to victims

A man who defrauded more than a 100 people through illegitimate electronic businesses and ran a “boiler room” operation out of a rental house in Coupeville was recently sentenced to prison and ordered to pay back his victims.

Roman Y. Ogourtsov, 37, pleaded guilty in Island County Superior Court last year to theft in the first degree with aggravating circumstances and four counts of money laundering. The aggravating circumstances, which allow for a sentence above the standard range, is that the crime was a major economic offense.

Last week, a judge sentenced him to 22 months in prison and ordered him to pay $759,000 in restitution to the victims that investigators were able to locate.

From 2012-2014, Ogourtsov used several business names on several professional-looking websites to sell high-end television sets to people across the country but then never actually sent the televisions. He would only accept direct deposits or wire transfers.

Ogourtsov accepted calls from the various customers and continually made excuses and promised that the electronics were on their way.

Court documents indicate that Ogourtsov was able to obtain about $1 million in a 15-month period.

Between 2012 and 2013, the state Attorney General’s Office received about 100 complaints from people who purchased TVs from Ogourtsov, according to court documents. The AG opened an investigation, as did the Mukilteo Police Department and the Bellevue Police Department.

The AG pressured Ogourtsov to return the money but only a small portion was. None of the agencies pursued charges.

Then in 2014, Lt. Mike Hawley with the Island County Sheriff’s Office received a complaint and knocked on the door of the Coupeville home listed as the corporate home of one of Ogourtsov’s businesses. He spoke with Ogourtsov, who claimed that he sold more than 30 TV sets a day over the internet.

Hawley returned with a search warrant and found evidence of the scheme Ogourtsov used to defraud people.

More in News

Woman accused of stealing, hiding gun

A 46-year-old South Whidbey woman was arrested for allegedly stealing a gun… Continue reading

Woman allegedly threatened officer over animal cruelty citation

An Oak Harbor woman was recently arrested for allegedly threatening to kill… Continue reading

Interim city attorney appointed during Feb. 18 council meeting

Oak Harbor Mayor Bob Severns appointed a new top lawyer during the… Continue reading

Participants, workers sought for 2020 census

As federal census preparations intensify in Island County, researchers emphasize the historical… Continue reading

Oak Harbor will look at alternatives to utility rate hikes

Oak Harbor ratepayers may not be facing increased utility rates, for now.… Continue reading

Johnson seeking third term on board of county commissioners

Island County Commissioner Jill Johnson is seeking a third term this fall.… Continue reading

Judge rules against downtown Oak Harbor housing project

A proposed housing development for low-income people does not conform to Oak… Continue reading

New Mexican restaurant opens in Oak Harbor

A new Mexican restaurant opened Wednesday in what used to be the… Continue reading

‘Sexually violent predator’ won’t be living on Whidbey

Island County’s first “sexually violent predator” will get to leave the special… Continue reading

Most Read