Michigan man avoids jail time, pays fine in nonrefundable bottle scheme

Brian Everidge will pay a $1,230 fine but avoid jail time for a scheme to return nonrefundable bottles and cans to Michigan.
Brian Everidge will pay a $1,230 fine but avoid jail time for a scheme to return nonrefundable bottles and cans to Michigan.

A Genesee County man who tried to pull a Seinfeld-style scheme to make $1,000 will avoid jail time and pay a fine for trying to return 10,000 nonrefundable bottles.

Brian Everidge avoided five years in prison and was ordered to pay $1,230 in fines and court costs after pleading guilty in Livingston County court.

“I made a huge mistake, your honor, and I regret it every day,” he said, according to the Livingston Daily.

Everidge admitted to trying to return more than 10,000 cans and bottles for 10 cents each. Each bottle and can purchased in the state of Michigan includes a 10 cent deposit. Consumers can then return those bottles and cans for a refund of the ten cents but it must be bought in the state of Michigan. 

Authorities have said that Everidge was stopped for speeding April 27 by state police in Livingston County. Inside the truck he was driving were aluminum cans and glass bottles that police were told were from Kentucky.

His story is similar to a "Seinfeld" episode when Kramer and Newman load up a truck full of New York cans (where the deposit is only 5 cents) with plans to bring them to Michigan.

While Everidge's story got a lot of attention, he's not the first to try and to pull off a Seinfeld-style scheme. In 2007, Michigan officials busted a much larger ring where 15 people were named in a 67-count warrant.

During "Operation Can Scam", Michigan authorities seized more than $500,000 in cash and claimed that millions of non-redeemable out-of-state cans were collected, crushed, packaged in plastic bags and sold at a discount to merchants who then redeemed them.

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Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.


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