MINEOLA, NY (WCBS 880) – It’s a weighty scam – sort of.

Authorities on Long Island say Ebony Washington hustled employees at five Target stores across Nassau County, in addition to other branches in New Jersey, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania.

WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall has details of the scam

Washington, 29, allegedly would purchase XBox and Nintendo game consoles and swap out the contents of the box with paper. She’d then seal the boxes up and return them for cash.

Washington allegedly hustled Target for $15,000, says police Sergeant Dennis Uti.

“Just about any major retailer, they have very liberal return policies now. They certainly are not going to question a customer who is making what appears to be a legitimate return,” said Uti. “On its face, each one of these returns appeared to be legitimate,” he added.

Washington is charged with grand larceny in the third degree and petit larceny. She’d allegedly worked the scam from November 16, 2010 to February 17, 2011.

She was arrested when she allegedly tried to return a paper-filled box to the Farmingdale Target Thursday just 20 minutes after she bought it.

What do you think of the scam? Are you surprised it took so long to catch a suspect? Sound off in the comments section.

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