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TAMPA, Florida (AP) - A Tampa man is accused of scamming Apple stores out of $309,768 through a scam using fake authorization codes for debit cards.

The Tampa Bay Times says 24-year-old Sharron Laverne Parrish Jr. is charged with wire fraud.

A Secret Service complaint says Parrish tricked Apple clerks in 16 states into accepting meaningless override codes in a scam made possible through a practice known as a "forced sale," ''forced post," or "forced code."

Authorities say he pretended to call his bank when his debit card was declined. He would then give the clerk the fake code to punch into the card reader.

Secret Service special agent John Joyce says the solution is for merchants not to permit hand-keyed override codes.

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