Fraud detectives this afternoon charged a New York man with felony criminal simulation and misdemeanor theft for peddling counterfeit tickets to Wednesday's Country Music Association Awards show.
Andrew Frank Arvia, 22, of Brewster, New York, is alleged to have advertised the tickets on Craigslist. One victim met Arvia yesterday at a West End Avenue coffee shop and paid him a total of $600 for two tickets. The victim became suspicious and took the tickets to the Bridgestone Arena box office where he learned they were fakes. The seat numbers listed on the tickets do not even exist.
The victim notified police and, after contacting officers, called Arvia and requested to buy more tickets at the same meeting place. Arvia arrived and was taken into custody. He was carrying six bogus tickets at the time. Arvia is charged with felony theft and felony criminal simulation. His bond is set at $20,000.
Persons wanting to attend tonight's show are urged to be extremely cautious when dealing with a ticket seller they do not know. Shows like the CMA Awards often attract criminals trying to sell counterfeit tickets.