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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Carolina

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, May 7, 2018

Scam Artist Sentenced to Eleven Years in Federal Prison

Columbia, South Carolina –------- United States Attorney Beth Drake announced today on May 2, 2018, April Cormelius Miller, age 44, of Seattle, Washington, was sentenced by District Court Judge Timothy M. Cain sitting in Anderson, South Carolina.  Miller was sentenced to serve 135 months in the Federal Bureau of Prisons to be followed by 3 years of Supervised Release. 

Miller was charged with two counts of wire fraud in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1343. The fraud consisted of offering a totally bogus investment which purported to be a legitimate program run out of Switzerland with the approval of banking and government entities in that country.  Miller would represent to potential investors that the investment was totally risk free and that the returns were up to 100% each month.  In order to boost her credibility Miller would claim that she had been in banking for 20 years, that she had large personal investments, that she had a number of attorneys on her payroll, and that for 17 years she had been successfully taking investors to Switzerland to engage in the investment she was offering.  These credentials turned out to be as bogus as the investment that was being offered.

In 2011 Miller came to the attention of the FBI in South Carolina which along with AUSA Stephens launched an undercover investigation into Miller’s activities.  During this operation Miller was recorded pitching the “opportunity” to persons she believed to be representatives of a charitable organization which had a $30 Million endowment which they wished to invest.  These persons were in fact FBI agents and operatives.

Miller was indicted in January 2012 and tried and convicted by a jury in June 2012.  During the trial it was shown that the investment program was in fact totally non-existent and that Miller had none of the credentials that she had claimed.  At the conclusion of the trial Miller was allowed to remain on bond, however, she became a fugitive and was not located by the United States Marshals Service until May 2017.

United States Attorney Drake commended the FBI, AUSA Stephens and the US Marshals Service for their role in a long and complicated investigation, prosecution and fugitive hunt.         

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Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Component(s): 
Contact: 
David C. Stephens (864) 282-2100
Updated May 7, 2018