CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police are warning Carolina Panther fans about a group of counterfeiters who took advantage of Sunday’s match-up with the Green Bay Packers.
Thomas Burke and his wife were looking forward to going to game on Sunday, and made the mistake of buying their tickets from a scalper.
"From what I could tell it looked just like all the other tickets", said Burke.
He didn’t end up with a seat in the stadium; instead he got high priced fake tickets. Investigators say the counterfeiters came up from Atlanta, and their fakes were of such good quality even they had a hard time telling them from the real thing.
"For the average fan they were very difficult, I looked at them and I couldn’t tell the difference”, said investigator Kevin Jones.
Police arrested 24 year old Walter Sledge and charged him with false pretense. Officers don’t know how many people got ripped off because they suspect that most victims didn’t report the fraud.
Burke knows he was not alone. He tells NewsChannel 36, "A lot of us would write it off as a loss. It was probably 75 (to) 100 (people) riding back on the Lynx mad and upset. You saw a lot of people walking away from the stadium after 1 o clock".
Police say they last saw fake Panther’s tickets, was the last time the team was competitive in the NFL.
Now that the excitement is back they urge fans to be careful and buy tickets from a reputable dealer.