Tacoma woman charged with wire fraud for stealing more than $550,000 from friends and acquaintances
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Washington
Allegedly defrauded those she met online with false claims about illness, need for tuition loans, or help for incarcerated family members
Seattle – a 40-year-old Tacoma woman appeared today in U.S. District Court in Seattle on a criminal complaint charging four counts of wire fraud for her scheme to defraud various friends and acquaintances, announced U.S. Attorney Nick Brown. Sabrina Taylor allegedly lied about her health, her employment status, and her education to steal more than $550,000 from people who had offered to help her.
According to records filed in the case, between November 2016, and July 2019, Taylor convinced various people to provide her with large amounts of money by claiming she needed the money to purchase medicine for multiple sclerosis, or to pay her tuition for college. She also claimed to need the funds to bail her brother out of jail. In fact, Taylor was not ill with multiple sclerosis, was not paying tuition to the University of Washington as claimed, and her brother was not in jail. Taylor told other stories about how she planned to repay the loans, lying about her employment, a litigation settlement with a local bank, and funds she expected to receive from her parents.
Some of the people she defrauded she met online through shared interests such as Japanese anime, comic books, or video games.
The charges contained in the complaint are only allegations. A person is presumed innocent unless and until he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
Wire fraud is punishable by up to 20 years in prison.
The case was investigated by the FBI.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Natalie Walton-Anderson.
Press contact for the U.S. Attorney’s Office is Communications Director Emily Langlie at (206) 553-4110 or Emily.Langlie@usdoj.gov.
Updated November 20, 2021