Woman who stole $4.8 million from Bullard resident get 8-year prison term
TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - A Shreveport woman is going to federal prison for eight years for her role in an elder fraud scheme.
Monica Ruiz, 45, pleaded guilty to a charge of wire fraud in March. Judge Jeremy Kernodle sentenced Ruiz to 97 months imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, on Tuesday. Ruiz must also pay $4,851,971 in restitution.
According to the indictment, Ruiz enlisted a variety of false and fraudulent pretenses, representations, and promises in a scheme to defraud an elderly victim from Bullard, Texas. Among the various misrepresentations Ruiz made in order to obtain money from the victim were the following:
- That Ruiz had been in a coma;
- That Ruiz had brain surgery;
- That Ruiz was falsely arrested and imprisoned;
- That Ruiz had bribed a judge and prosecutor;
- That Ruiz’s son died in a car accident in Pennsylvania;
- That Ruiz was in a car accident;
- That Ruiz had a kidney transplant;
- That Ruiz’s daughter was committed to a mental institution;
- That Ruiz was incarcerated; and
- That Ruiz’s grandmother died.
At times, Ruiz impersonated other people in communications with the victim. At other times, she created and used false personas in communications with the victim. Over the course of her scheme, Ruiz obtained more than $4.85 million from the victim.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Secret Service with the assistance of the Tyler Police Department and the Louisiana State Police - Gaming Enforcement Division and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Nathaniel C. Kummerfeld.
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