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Vendors, Police Warn Football Fans about Fake Ticket Sales

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HIDALGO – Local police and vendors are warning football fans to use caution when purchasing Super Bowl tickets.

The big game is just over a month away and it will take place in Houston.

There are a number of Dallas Cowboys fans who are very hopeful that their team will play in the Super Bowl this year. Ticket vendors said this makes some in the Rio Grande Valley excited about being there live.

But they need to be vigilant when buying tickets for the game.

Hidalgo resident Nora Martinez is a Cowboys season ticket holder. With her team having a good season, she said she’s envisioning seeing the big game live.

“It’s been a bucket list of ours for my family and the possibility of it being a Cowboys’ Super Bowl is actually very exciting for us,” she said.

Martinez recently saw an advertisement during a game to purchase tickets for the Super Bowl. She looked into it, and then called to place the order for two tickets at a total of $15,000. However, she didn’t trust the sellers and at the last minute said no.

“When I called the number, it was actually like a personal cell phone and the person was like – couldn’t tell me where they were at, couldn’t give much information about the tickets. They were selling the tickets for $6,500 a seat per person. So he told me that it would be maybe four weeks before the Super Bowl that they would contact me and so I kind got a little scared,” she said.

Martinez decided to go with a local vendor she’s used before. That vendor said illegitimate ticket sales are very common in the Valley this year.

“I’ve sold Super Bowl tickets for the last 12 years, but I’ve never seen it this complex ever before,” James Arizmendi said. “The way the system is. There basically there’s very few supply and lots of demand.”

He said tickets for the Super Bowl are not as readily available as fraudulent vendors might want people to believe.

“NFL owns every single ticket. Every NFL player gets two tickets and anybody that’s a season ticket holder for the Houston Texans gets a lottery so they may get a chance. And, of course, corporate America gets probably 80 percent of them,” Arizmendi said.

Police also warn to verify the legitimacy of which people do business with and to consider going back to business with places people already know. If not, people may never get back the money.

“A lot of these places are from out of the country. So there’s no jurisdiction as far as law enforcement goes. It becomes a federal offense and a lot of times it’s not cost effective to do it,” Weslaco Police spokesman Bernie Garza said.

Garza said that depending on the case, people might risk not being able to have any law enforcement involvement.

He added that if a deal for tickets, or any item for that matter, appears to be too good to be true it probably is. He said to be cautious because there’s always someone out there who is just trying to make an easy buck.

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