HomeNewsKenyan Woman Fined Ksh.119M in Romance Scam

Kenyan Woman Fined Ksh.119M in Romance Scam

Kenyan Woman Fined Ksh.119M in Romance Scam

A Kenyan woman was sentenced to seven years in prison by a US court in Boston, Massachusetts, on Tuesday for running a romance scam that targeted people in the US.

Florence Mwende Musau was ordered to pay Ksh.119 million ($957,000) in restitution for her role in romance scams and other online frauds that deceived victims into sending money to bank accounts controlled by her and five others.

Musau, 38, was charged with wire fraud conspiracy and bank fraud.

Kenyan Woman Fined Ksh.119M in Romance Scam. According to court documents, the group created fictitious profiles on online dating or social media websites, swindling their victims out of Ksh.480 million ($4 million).

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She pleaded guilty in 2021 in a federal court in Boston and was sentenced on Tuesday to 44 months in prison and 30 months of supervised release.

According to the Massachusetts Attorney’s Office, Musau and her associates created bogus profiles on online dating or social media websites to gain the trust of potential victims and then direct those victims to transfer money under pretenses.

Musau opened bank accounts in and around Boston using fake passports in the names of numerous aliases to receive the proceeds of the romance scams.

She then made large cash withdrawals from those accounts, usually in amounts less than Ksh.1.2 million, in an attempt to avoid detection and currency transaction reporting requirements.

Musau also benefited from fraudulent state pandemic unemployment assistance benefits in the names of victims.

“As part of the scheme, Musau opened nearly ten fraudulent bank accounts and received approximately $1 million in fraud proceeds,” according to court documents.

Allison Burroughs, a Massachusetts judge, also ordered the Kenyan woman to forfeit approximately Ksh.44 million ($350,000) and a Lexus SUV.