LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A Las Vegas woman is charged in a West Virginia lottery scam case that took advantage of an elderly victim.
Shelly Anne Leipham, 65, faces three counts of wire fraud, five counts of mail fraud and three counts of money laundering, according to the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of West Virginia.
Leipham is accused of trying to dupe a victim, telling the person they had won $1 million, and then convincing the person to send her $25,000 over the course of a two-year period.
Authorities are seeking a money judgment in the amount of $336,402 against Leipham.
If convicted, Leipham is facing up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 for each of the wire fraud and mail fraud counts. She’s facing up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $500,000 for each of the money laundering counts.
“This case showcases just one of the many ways people prey on our elderly neighbors,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Randolph J. Bernard. “Lottery scams aren’t new, and it’s most despicable when the perpetrator targets someone who is vulnerable. We encourage everyone to be vigilant and suspicious. If it sounds too good to be true, it’s most likely a scam.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah E. Wagner is prosecuting the case. The IRS and the West Virginia State Police investigated.