Michigan Woman Sentenced for Role in International Wire Fraud Conspiracy
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that Renee Britton, 25, of Taylor, Michigan, who was convicted of wire fraud for her participation in an international wire fraud ring, was sentenced to eight months of home detention and three years of probation by Chief U.S. District Court Judge William M. Skretny. Britton was also ordered to pay up to $26,736.95 in restitution to victims of the scheme.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Fauzia K. Mattingly, who handled the case, stated that Britton received payments from victims who had applied for loans over the Internet with seemingly legitimate financial lenders which were in fact virtual companies being operated by scammers in Canada. The victims were led to believe that once they paid an up-front fee to Britton and others, they would receive the loan proceeds. The victims never received the loans or a refund of their payments. To date, defrauded victims have lost more than $3.5 million to the loan scheme, and approximately 2,700 victims of the fraud have been identified by law enforcement. In total, 21 individuals have been arrested in connection with this fraud scheme, and the cases are pending before the U.S. District Court in Buffalo.
The sentencing is the result of an investigation by Special Agents of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge, James C. Spero.