Grocer duped by Web scam

BOISE, Idaho — Supervalu, owner of the Albertsons chain and one of the nation's largest grocers, has fallen prey to an e-mail scam, losing about $10 million after wiring money to fraudulent bank accounts, federal court filings show.

The scam is detailed in a pair of forfeiture cases filed under seal earlier this year in U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho.

The fraud began after the Eden Prairie, Minn.-based supermarket received two e-mails — one from someone purporting to be an American Greetings Corp. employee and another claiming to be with Frito-Lay, according to court documents. Both e-mails claimed the companies wanted payments sent to new bank account numbers.

Supervalu sent more than $6.5 million to the phony American Greetings account and nearly $3.6 million to the phony Frito-Lay account before realizing it was all a scam.

The FBI was able to capture the money before it was whisked away by the scammers, but now American Greetings, Frito-Lay and Supervalu all have laid claim to the money.

Megan Ferington, a spokeswoman for American Greetings, based in Cleveland, couldn't comment on the case because it's currently under litigation. Officials with Frito-Lay and the FBI did not immediately return phone calls from The Associated Press.

Criminal charges have not yet been filed in the case.

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