UPDATE: FSU Student Arrested for Selling Bogus FSU-Clemson Tickets

UPDATED 1.7.2013 by Julie Montanaro

An FSU student accused of selling counterfeit tickets to the 2012 FSU-CLemson game could eventually have those charges dropped.

Court records show Christopher Mertin was offered a pre-trial diversion deal in late December.

Mertin must pay restitution to all his victims and do 200 hours of community service.

If he successfully completes the diversion deal, his attorney said, the felony charges against him will be dropped.

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UPDATED 9.20.2012 by Julie Montanaro

Christopher Mertin posted $21,000 bond this morning and has been released from jail.

FSU Police spokesman MAJ Jim Russell says no other victims have come forward.

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UPDATED 9.19.2012 by Julie Montanaro

An FSU student is under arrest. He's accused of printing and selling fake tickets to the FSU Clemson game.

A Tallahassee couple was the first to report it on Monday and just a few hours later, three roommates helped police nab the man suspected of selling them.

Christopher Huxford, Thomas Finnegan and Matt Manno wanted tickets to the sold out FSU-Clemson game and found two "student guest" tickets available on Craiglist.

They arranged to meet the seller, paid 140 bucks and soon realized the tickets weren't real.

"We got home and really started thinking about it and we were like, you know, when you buy them online you can print out as many as you want," Huxford said.

"I'm furious. I wanted to go to the game. We had a good price on the tickets. I thought it was legit and it wasn't and I'm bummed out," Finnegan said.

FSU police have arrested 20 year old Christopher Mertin. He's facing felony charges for forgery, fraud and counterfeiting. Authorities have heard from at least five victims and fear there could be more.

"We think he may have printed up as many as 22 of these fake tickets so there is a potential there could be people out there that have been had," said FSU Spokesman Major Jim Russell. "If so, we want to hear from them."

Christopher, Thomas and Matt actually helped police solve the case. When Christopher and Thomas got suspicious, they asked their roommate Matt to call and see if the two tickets were still available. Mertin said yes. All three wound up confronting him - comparing bar codes and guest names - and demanding their money back.

"He turned white as a ghost. He was just kinda ... had that face, that look on his face that he was busted and he knew it," Manna said.

"We ended up calling the police and they showed up and that was it. He was arrested," Huxford said.

"Bottom line ... you're out 140 dollars and you don't have a ticket to the game?"

"Yes."

FSU Police have since searched Mertin's apartment, and seized his computer and cell phone. They're trying to find out if there are other football fans who have fallen for the fake tickets.

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Tallahassee, FL - September 19, 2012
By: Julie Montanaro

FSU student Christopher Mertin was arrested Tuesday and accused of printing and selling bogus tickets to this weekend's FSU-Clemson game.

FSU Police say the victims all responded to ads on Craigslist for "student guest" tickets. Police say Mertin sold at least five tickets at $70 each before two of the buyers got suspicious.

"They set up their own sting really," said FSU Police Spokesman Jim Russell. Russell says the roommates bought two tickets and then got suspicious. Russell says they arranged to meet Mertin to buy another ticket and confronted him.

They also called FSU Police.

FSU Police say they searched Mertin's home and confiscated his computer and phone.

Arrest papers released today say Mertin "remembers selling at least five tickets with altered barcodes and printing at least 22 copies of these tickets."

FSU Police Spokesman Jim Russell says at this point they have identified five victims.

Mertin faces six counts of counterfeiting and forgery as well as petty theft and fraud.


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