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Lottery scammer stole nearly $1 million from one elderly woman

Aug 10, 2021, 5:37 pm

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Scam AlertScam Alert: Lottery scammer stole nearly $1 million from one elderly womanRating:

Crook is sentenced to nine years in federal prison

By Kate Northrop

On Wednesday, a scammer who stole almost $1 million from one single victim in a lottery scheme was sentenced to 108 months in federal prison.

Leonard Luton, a Jamaican national living in Brooklyn, New York, scammed an elderly woman from Estes Park, Colorado of more than $970,000, according to prosecutors.

Court documents show that Luton and another Jamaican national worked together in a scam to convince the woman that she won $2.8 million and a Mercedes Benz in a lottery. The classic scheme required that she pay thousands of dollars upfront in fake fees in order to receive those fictional winnings.

According to a press release from the United States Department of Justice, the conmen had the woman mail packages of cash and cashier's checks, in addition to six iPhones, to the addresses of Luton's friends.

The scammers had even visited the woman's home in Estes Park and robbed her by another way of deception. The first instance occurred in October 2018, where a co-conspirator had shown up to her doorstep at 1:30 am disguised as an FBI agent. Showing her a fake FBI badge, he ordered her to hand over $65,000 in cash.

Luton himself took a second trip to her house in January 2019 in a bid to steal even more, but he was arrested at the scene. Ironically, he was in possession of one of the iPhones given to him by the victim.

At that point, she had already been robbed of more than $970,000.

"Lottery scams are just one way that fraudsters prey on the elderly and vulnerable victims," Acting U.S. Attorney Matt Kirsch said. "Together with our law enforcement partners, we are working to protect the elderly and to make scammers like Luton face justice."

In February 2020, Luton was convicted of one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and eight counts of aiding and abetting mail fraud. In addition to his sentencing by United States District Court Judge Christine M. Arguello to 108 months in federal prison, the Court entered an order of forfeiture of $484,123.16 and imposed a $900 special assessment fee.

"This sentence is a significant step toward justice for the elderly victim of Mr. Luton's self-serving greed and deception," FBI Denver Special Agent in Charge Michael Schneider stated. "The FBI is committed to combating those who prey on vulnerable members of our community. The FBI extends its appreciation to the Larimer County Sheriff's Office, Estes Park Police Department, and the U.S. Attorney's Office for their collaboration on this investigation."

In addition to his nine-year sentence in federal prison, Luton will undergo 3 years of supervised release and was ordered to pay $881,47.41 in restitution in his role in the lottery scheme.

This lottery scam is similar to the case in which another individual from a group of Jamaican scam artists was sentenced to nearly six years in prison for conning nearly $1.2 million from one single elderly man. The fraudster reportedly used aliases such as "Damian Jackson," "Jesse Jackson," and "Huckleberry Finn" to deceive the victim.

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22 comments. Last comment 2 months ago by Stat$talker.
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Simpsonville
United States
Member #163182
January 22, 2015
2723 Posts
Online

That is a new low...showing up to her doorstep @ 0130.   Reading on I sure smiled when this thug showed up and get arrested.

Like I've said before but changed the tune a bit, restitution paid before sentencing in FULL.   If not add about 15 more years.

    Avatar
    * In hot pursuit of $ *
    White Shores- California
    United States
    Member #136471
    December 12, 2012
    6741 Posts
    Offline

    * " Fools rush in where Angels fear to tread."- Alexander Pope.

     * Voice of Reason *   

    * People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

      Stat$talker's avatar - animated sphere.gif
      700 light yrs West of Milky Way Galaxy's Center
      United States
      Member #200642
      September 1, 2019
      1657 Posts
      Offline

      The Thugs shoulda gotten 108 YEARS in Prison... and wonder why there were no "Impersonating an FBI Agent" charges?... that's a Felony I believe...

      Elderly folks need to learn to just hang up the phone...

      ...MATH... The final Stochastic frontier...

      These are the Lottery Voyages of Stat$talker..!!

      The ongoing Mission,..to seek out the Laws of "Probability Math"...

       to master its rules to invoke...to Conquer ALL Major Jackpots..!!

      ...To boldly go,... Where NO Player has gone before...!!

        Avatar
        Baton Rouge, LA
        United States
        Member #4602
        May 7, 2004
        745 Posts
        Offline

        At least justice was done in this case. Unfortunately, the victim will probably never see any of her money.

        I don't know how people fall for this though. I have a neighbor who fell for the tech support scam and even after I told her it was a scam, she didn't believe me until they tried to take her for $5000. People don't listen even when you try to warn them.

        If these scammers call me, I just hang up and block the number.

        Prisoner Six

        "I am not a number, I am a free man!"

          Avatar
          Gallatin Tennesee
          United States
          Member #194096
          November 29, 2018
          98 Posts
          Offline

          In the end it seems like she ended up outsmarting the Jamaican dirtbag. My guess is he had called her on "his" new iPhone and told her he was coming over to get another few grand for yet another fake fee payment. She no doubt called the cops and they waited inside the house and listened to him try to get more money before putting him in cuffs. He and his fake badge  buddies need to spend about 30 yrs behind bars, 9 years is not severe enough. This poor woman will never trust anyone again. which is really sad.

          US Flag

            GreyGreen's avatar - Lottery-049.jpg

            Canada
            Member #215859
            June 12, 2021
            16 Posts
            Offline

            When will the lesson be learned??

            No No

              Avatar
              * In hot pursuit of $ *
              White Shores- California
              United States
              Member #136471
              December 12, 2012
              6741 Posts
              Offline

              When will the lesson be learned??

              No No

              * My point exactly! My earlier post cuts both ways but some are incapable of thinking clearly so my post is nuked.Approve

               * Voice of Reason *   

              * People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

                Avatar
                Gallatin Tennesee
                United States
                Member #194096
                November 29, 2018
                98 Posts
                Offline

                * My point exactly! My earlier post cuts both ways but some are incapable of thinking clearly so my post is nuked.Approve

                Not sure why anyone would resent your comments on this subject, you are simply stating truth. The only way a con man can survive is by meeting gullible people. To continue giving money to some stranger while you are getting nothing in return should set off alarm bells for most sane people. These guys were awful dirtbags, but they can't do anything unless she cooperates. People have got to remember what their grandmothers told them "when something seems too good to be true, it's usually a lie."

                Sulk OffSurrender

                  sully16's avatar - sharan
                  25
                  Dr.President Elect
                  Michigan
                  United States
                  Member #81738
                  October 28, 2009
                  90763 Posts
                  Offline

                  The article does not state her age, it's easy to point that righteous finger at her. She is a victim plain and simple.

                  Nobody knows her mental status, is she on medications? No matter the circumstances, she is a victim and I feel bad for her, she paid a very high price, thank God they didn't Physically hurt or even kill her.

                   Let's go Brandon! ROFL

                    sully16's avatar - sharan
                    25
                    Dr.President Elect
                    Michigan
                    United States
                    Member #81738
                    October 28, 2009
                    90763 Posts
                    Offline

                    * My point exactly! My earlier post cuts both ways but some are incapable of thinking clearly so my post is nuked.Approve

                    Your earlier post WAS deliberately ambiguous, now you can play the victim, why don't you hide in some freaking closet and digress for awhile.

                     Let's go Brandon! ROFL

                      Avatar
                      Bronx ny
                      United States
                      Member #209099
                      August 20, 2020
                      45 Posts
                      Offline

                      I don't believe this story tell that to somebody that believes it. Mailing them cash Loads of it really? Having $65,000 available in the house and getting robbed for it? okay sure

                        Avatar
                        Bronx ny
                        United States
                        Member #209099
                        August 20, 2020
                        45 Posts
                        Offline

                        Being elderly is not a free ticket to be stupid... If this story is true which I'm sure it's not.. you sure deserve to get robbed if you're that dumb... Facts... tell them mr. Lotto sent cha..

                          Avatar
                          * In hot pursuit of $ *
                          White Shores- California
                          United States
                          Member #136471
                          December 12, 2012
                          6741 Posts
                          Offline

                          Hey intrusive one: Your comment is...

                          Little Women Dancing GIF by TV One

                           * Voice of Reason *   

                          * People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

                            grwurston's avatar - Lottery-062.jpg
                            Same #'s, different games.
                            Here
                            United States
                            Member #90247
                            April 24, 2010
                            10643 Posts
                            Offline

                            Most of these s pick out the smallest, weakest, most vulnerable persons as their victims. They choose the elderly for these reasons and also because they sometimes tend to be less sharp mentally.

                            It's not that they are stupid. They may have been highly intelligent when they were younger. But due to old age, health issues, or early dementia, they can no longer think clearly and as such can be easily coerced or intimidated. 

                            Do you have an older family member, that doesn't get around so good, that forgets things, that loses their train of thought, that keeps repeating the same thing? Those are signs. So please, look out for them and take care of your loved ones.

                            Remember, 20-30-40 years from now, that could be you. If it is, watch out for the scammers.

                            The lottery is the same way. 

                            https://youtu.be/b5-iJUuPWis