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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Central District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Alleged Romance Scammer from Orange County Arrested on Federal Charges of Defrauding at Least 10 Victims Out of Over $1 Million

            LOS ANGELES – Federal authorities have arrested an Irvine resident on fraud charges that were unsealed today to reveal allegations he stole more than $1 million from at least 10 victims in Southern California – some of whom he developed romantic relationships with – and used the personal information of some to obtain credit.

            Ze’Shawn Stanley Campbell, 33, who in recent years has lived in several cities in Los Angeles and Orange counties, was taken into custody March 6 at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport after arriving on an international flight. During his first court appearance Monday in federal court in Fort Worth, Campbell was ordered detained, and the United States Marshals Service was ordered to transport him to Los Angeles. Once he arrives in Southern California, Campbell will be arraigned and will be afforded a detention hearing.

            Over the course of six years, Campbell allegedly defrauded his victims by lying about his wealth, his ownership of various business, his success in investing money, and his service in the military. After convincing the victims he was wealthy, reliable and successful, Campbell asked for money, including for loans that he claimed he would use to support his businesses and to pay his medical bills, according to the indictment. In some cases, Campbell obtained money from victims with false claims he would invest their funds.

            Notwithstanding his various claims, the indictment alleges Campbell used the funds to support his lifestyle, which included the purchase of luxury items. When some of his victims refused to give or stopped giving him money, he applied for loans and credit cards in their names without their knowledge and then failed to pay off those loans and credit card balances, according to the indictment.

            An indictment contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

            The indictment filed on March 5 and unsealed today charges Campbell with five counts of wire fraud, one count of money laundering, two counts of bank fraud, and one count of aggravated identity theft.

            The wire fraud and bank fraud charges in the indictment each carry a 30-year statutory maximum sentence, the money laundering charge carries a potential 10-year federal prison sentence, and the aggravated identity theft charge carries a mandatory, consecutive sentence of two years of imprisonment. 

            This matter is being investigated by the FBI.

            This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Poonam G. Kumar of the Major Frauds Section.

Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Contact: 
Thom Mrozek Director of Media Relations thom.mrozek@usdoj.gov (213) 894-6947
Press Release Number: 
21-041
Updated March 10, 2021